Article

Development and Evaluation of a Short Adverse Childhood Experiences Measure

Authors:
  • Temple University College of Public Health
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Abstract

Introduction: Clinicians require tools to rapidly identify individuals with significant childhood adversity as part of routine primary care. The goal of this study was to shorten the 11-item Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) measure and evaluate the feasibility and validity of this shortened measure as a screener to identify adults who have experienced significant childhood adversity. Methods: Statistical analysis was conducted in 2015. ACE item responses obtained from 2011-2012 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System data were combined to form a sample of 71,413 adults aged ≥18 years. The 11-item Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System ACE measure was subsequently reduced to a two-item screener by maintaining the two dimensions of abuse and household stressors and selecting the most prevalent item within each dimension. Results: The screener included household alcohol and childhood emotional abuse items. Overall, 42% of respondents and at least 75% of the individuals with four or more ACEs endorsed one or both of these experiences. Using the 11-item ACE measure as the standard, a cut off of one or more ACEs yielded a sensitivity of 99%, but specificity was low (66%). Specificity improved to 94% when using a cut off of two ACEs, but sensitivity diminished (70%). There was no substantive difference between the 11-and two-item ACE measures in their strength of association with an array of health outcomes. Conclusions: A two-item ACE screener appropriate for rapid identification of adults who have experienced significant childhood adversity was developed.

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... Researchers reported that ACE categories were added based on prior evidence that linked new categories to negative outcomes. Expanded ACE categories were examined among adults (Cohen-Cline et al., 2019;Cronholm et al., 2015;Kuhlman et al., 2018;Lee et al., 2017;Morrill et al., 2019;Wade et al., 2017), parents (Braveman et al., 2018;Gillespie & Folger, 2017;Mersky et al., 2017;Mersky & Janczewski, 2018), college students (Karatekin & Hill, 2019), and children (Bethell et al., 2017;Duke & Borowsky, 2018;Finkelhor et al., 2013Finkelhor et al., , 2015Maguire-Jack et al., 2019;Renjilian et al., 2018;Sacks & Murphey, 2018). (Table 2 about here). ...
... The authors reported that the distribution of scores with this format were comparable to those of other studies. Wade et al. (2017) developed a two-item brief screener from an 11item ACE measure used for the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BFRSS). The two items selected (emotional abuse; alcohol abuse in home) were the most prevalent items affirmed by respondents reporting four or more ACEs. ...
... Researchers evaluated the validity of the revised ACE tools, using construct, criterion, and face validity in 14 studies. Construct validity (n = 8) was measured to identify whether the revised ACE tools appropriately measured underlying theoretical constructs of ACEs (Bethell et al., 2017;Cohen-Cline et al., 2019;Cronholm et al., 2015;Karatekin & Hill, 2019;Maguire-Jack et al., 2019;Mersky et al., 2017;Morrill et al., 2019;Wade et al., 2017). Across studies, additional items were appropriate and loaded on the relevant expanded ACE categories. ...
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The relationship between adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and risky behavior, chronic illness, and premature mortality is well documented. Despite this evidence, screening for ACEs in primary care settings remains limited. Objections to widespread screening include concerns that the original ACE screening tool limited childhood adversities to family and household dysfunction. The purpose of this scoping review is to describe current knowledge for expanding ACEs categories and revising the formatting and scoring of the screening tool. With the assistance of a medical librarian, we used a two-step process to conduct a systematic search in three databases (CINAHL, OVID Medline, PsycINFO). Our aim was to focus on articles that expanded ACE categories and/or revised the scoring or formatting of the ACE tool. Eighteen articles (reporting 19 studies) met criteria. A minimum of two authors extracted the relevant characteristics of the studies independently and conferred to reach agreement. The majority of studies broadened ACEs to include community and systemic categories; three studies revised the formatting or scoring of the ACE tool. Exposure to community violence (ECV) was the most frequently added category (15), followed by economic hardship in childhood (EHC) (13); bullying (10); absence/death of parent or significant others (9); and discrimination (7). This evidence supports the expansion of ACE screening tools for assessment of childhood trauma and timely treatment.
... However, there are no clear guidelines recommended for ACEs surveillance or screening, even though they list ACE screening within the AAP toolbox. [9][10][11][12] This lack of direction, based on preliminary evidence, underscores the importance of further translating research knowledge into prevention practices within primary care settings. 13,14 This screening gap is due, in part, to the difficulty in defining a manageable list of items on which to screen for ACEs, a likely precursor to toxic stress, as well as understanding process and philosophical barriers to screening. ...
... In an effort to respond to primary care provider concerns about the length of time it takes to screen and to encourage more consistent screening for social/emotional factors, it may be worthwhile to examine the relationship between ACEs to see if any can be prioritized when asking families about risk during routine health maintenance visits. 10 To do this accurately and efficiently, one could focus on a screening program for those ACEs that are most prevalent; or on those that frequently co-occur; or on those that predict other ACEs; or on those that combine in ways that lead to increased harm. Such analyses also require measurement of proximal health outcomes, especially those that emerge during childhood, such as asthma, and emotional, developmental and behavioral outcomes. ...
... 29 Existing literature also supports aggregating questions as both valid and reliable because ACEs frequently co-occur and thus reflect cumulative psychosocial risk. 7,10,30 One study even noted that including a question about socioeconomic status (similar to ACE 1, experiencing economic hardship) improved the predictive validity of ACE screening even when reducing the overall number of questions. 30 Another study of ACEs screening in adults used a simplified scoring that groups ACEs together, 10 although with different items than what emerged in this study of children. ...
Article
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Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) have lifelong health consequences, yet screening remains challenging. Particularly in clinical settings, brief screeners that could lead to comprehensive assessments may be more feasible. We explore how two ACEs (economic hardship, parental/caregiver divorce/separation) are associated with other ACEs, asthma, and emotional, developmental, or behavioral (EDB) problems. Using the 2016 National Survey of Children’s Health, we assessed the associations between ACEs and asthma and EDB problems and calculated sensitivities, specificities and predictive values. Parents frequently reported 1+ ACEs for their child (50.3%). Individual ACE frequency ranged from 4.2 to 29.6%; all were significantly associated with EDB problems (adjusted odds ratios (aORs): 2.2−5.1) and more ACEs confirmed higher odds. Two ACES (economic hardship, parental/caregiver divorce/separation) co-occurred frequently with other ACEs, having either predicted EDB problems similarly to other ACEs (aORs 1.8; 95% CI 1.4, 2.3) and having both greatly increased odds (aOR 3.8; 95% CI 2.8, 5.2). The negative predictive value of EDB problems associated with citing neither ACE was high (95.7%). Similar trends with asthma were observed. Economic hardship and caregiver separation are strongly associated with other ACEs, EDB problems and asthma. A brief screener including these ACEs may reduce clinical barriers to broader ACEs screening.
... Consistent with broader accreditation standards, behavioral health conditions are a qualifying condition for the care coordination program as well as a prioritized health target of the broader organization. Training in evidence-based behavioral health programs is provided as part of this program, including training in two well recognized and federally and locally prioritized evidencebased practices (EBPs), Mental Health First Aid (23)(24)(25) and the Adverse Childhood Experiences Screener (26). Mental Health First Aid is an educational program to increase mental health literacy, reduce stigma, and support mental health service navigation. ...
... Through didactic training, implementers are provided with a broad knowledge of behavioral health conditions and basic skills in recognizing, approaching and providing initial support for behavioral health problems (23). The Adverse Childhood Experiences Screener is a short questionnaire used to rapidly identify and assess patients that may be at risk for poor health outcomes due to childhood trauma (26). To optimize implementation and effectiveness of these programs and improve both implementation and patient health outcomes, we applied Implementation Mapping to support an effort to expand and support implementation of behavioral health EBPs within the context of this Care Coordination program serving patients with chronic health condition (e.g., Diabetes, hypertension) at the partnered FQHC. ...
Article
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Background A large and growing percentage of medically underserved groups receive care at federally qualified health centers (FQHCs). Care coordination is an evidence-based approach to address disparities in healthcare services. A partnered FQHC established a care coordination model to improve receipt and quality of healthcare for patients most at risk for poor health outcomes. This care coordination model emphasizes identification and support of behavioral health needs (e.g., depression, anxiety) and two evidence-based behavioral health programs needs were selected for implementation within the context of this care coordination model. Implementation Mapping is a systematic process for specifying the implementation strategies and outcomes. The current case study describes the application of Implementation Mapping to inform the selection and testing of implementation strategies to improve implementation of two behavioral health programs in a Care Coordination Program at a partnered FQHC. Methods We applied Implementation Mapping to inform the development, selection and testing of implementation strategies to improve the implementation of two evidence-based behavioral health programs within a care coordination program at a partnered FQHC. Results Results are presented by Implementation Mapping task, from Task 1 through Task 5. We also describe the integration of additional implementation frameworks (The Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research, Health Equity Implementation Framework) within the Implementation Mapping process to inform determinant identification, performance and change objectives development, design and tailoring of implementation strategies and protocols, and resulting evaluation of implementation outcomes. Conclusions The current project is an example of real-world application of Implementation Mapping methodology to improve care outcomes for a high priority population that is generalizable to other settings utilizing similar care models and health equity endeavors. Such case studies are critical to advance our understanding and application of innovative implementation science methods such as Implementation Mapping.
... Pediatric providers are in a unique position to advocate for an assessment of ACE exposure as part of the regular pediatric exam (Felitti, 2009;Flaherty et al., 2009). Yet, some clinicians have objected to the time and burden of assessment (Wade, Becker, Bevans, Ford, & Forrest, 2017). Thus, shorter ACE screens such as a two-step screening strategy, which lower patient and provider assessment burden in healthcare settings, are now available (Dong et al., 2004;Wade et al., 2017). ...
... Yet, some clinicians have objected to the time and burden of assessment (Wade, Becker, Bevans, Ford, & Forrest, 2017). Thus, shorter ACE screens such as a two-step screening strategy, which lower patient and provider assessment burden in healthcare settings, are now available (Dong et al., 2004;Wade et al., 2017). ...
Article
Objective: The purpose of this study was to estimate the prevalence of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) among children in the United States and to examine the relationship between child and family characteristics and the likelihood of reported exposure to ACEs. Methods: Data were drawn from the nationally representative 2016 National Survey of Children's Health (NSCH). Parent-reported child ACE exposure was measured using counts of those reporting zero ACEs, one to three ACEs, and four or more ACEs. Results: The study sample included 45,287 children. The most prevalent types of ACE exposure experienced by children were economic hardship (22.5%) and parent or guardian divorce or separation (21.9%). Older children (34.7%), Non-Hispanic African American children (34.7%), children with special health care needs (SHCN; 36.3%), children living in poverty (37.2%), and children living in rural areas (30.5%) were more likely to be exposed to parental divorce or separation than their counterparts. Five cross-cutting factors emerged as important across outcomes: child's age, family structure, poverty, type of health insurance, and SHCN status. Conclusions: We found high prevalence rates of economic hardship on a national level. Our findings of higher prevalence among rural children further suggest the importance of the intersection of place and ACEs. Therefore, the geographic component of ACEs must be considered by policymakers. The identification of predictive factors related to high ACE exposure can inform early interventions at the national level.
... Primary pediatric care providers likely have more contact with families at-risk for ACEs compared to other healthcare sectors and are uniquely positioned to assess for ACEs within the child's medical home. However, some pediatric providers report concerns about parental perceptions, time, and burden of assessment as significant barriers to implementation (Wade, Becker, Bevans, Ford, & Forrest, 2017). Thus, ACE screening strategies to help increase the implementation of screening in the medical home may be helpful. ...
... Thus, ACE screening strategies to help increase the implementation of screening in the medical home may be helpful. Wade et al. (2017) developed a brief, two-step screening process to reduce duration and burden of assessment on primary care providers. Recent research has demonstrated that parents support ACEs screening within the medical home and may view their child's pediatrician as a change-agent to help break the intergenerational cycle of adversity (Conn et al., 2018). ...
Article
Background Clinical presentations of ADHD vary according to biological and environmental developmental influences. An emerging field of research has demonstrated relationships between exposure to adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and ADHD prevalence, particularly in high-risk samples. However, research examining the combined role of traditional risk factors of ADHD and ACEs is limited, and reliance on high-risk samples introduces sampling bias. Objective To examine the influence of ACEs on ADHD diagnosis using a large, nationally representative sample of US children. Participants and setting Nationally representative samples (2017 and 2018) of 40,075 parents from the National Survey of Children’s Health (NSCH). Methods We conducted logistic regression models to examine the association of ACEs and ADHD diagnosis, controlling for child and parent demographic variables and other risk factors. Results Exposure to ACEs was significantly associated with parent-reported ADHD diagnosis, controlling for known parental and child-risk factors of ADHD. The association followed a gradient pattern of increased ADHD prevalence with additional exposures. Compared to children with no ACEs, the odds of an ADHD diagnosis were 1.39, 1.92, and 2.72 times higher among children with one, two and three or more ACEs. The ACE most strongly associated with the odds of ADHD was having lived with someone with mental illness closely followed by parent/guardian incarceration. Conclusions Results further strengthen the evidence that ACEs exposure is associated with increased ADHD prevalence. Clinicians should assess ACEs in the diagnosis of ADHD. Furthermore, results of the study lend support to the efforts of agencies (both institutional and state-level) promoting routine screening of ACEs in children.
... Trauma. We used the 11-item Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) questionnaire to assess experiences of emotional, physical, and sexual abuse (2 items); physical and emotional neglect; parental separation or divorce; and, household substance use, mental illness, partner violence, and incarceration prior to age 18. 21 To assess the cumulative effects of ACE, we tallied the number of ACE endorsed by each participant to create a continuous variable ranging from zero to eleven. We also inquired about sexual intimate partner violence in the prior 12 months. ...
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Background: Women who report transactional sex are at increased risk for HIV and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs). However,in the United States, social, behavioral, and trauma-related vulnerabilities associated with transactional sex are understudied and data on access to biomedical HIV prevention among women who report transactional sex is limited. Methods: In 2016, we conducted a population-based, cross-sectional survey of women of low socioeconomic status recruited via respondent-driven sampling in Portland, Oregon. We calculated the prevalence and,assessed the correlates of, transactional sex using generalized linear models accounting for sampling design. We also compared health outcomes,HIV screening, and knowledge and uptake of HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) between women who did and did not report transactional sex. Results: Of 334 women, 13.6% reported transactional sex (95% confidence interval [CI]: 6.8%, 20.5%). Women who reported transactional sex were older, more likely to identify as black, to identify as lesbian or bisexual, to experience childhood trauma and recent sexual violence, and to have been homeless. Six percent(95%CI: 1.8%, 10.5%) of women with no adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) reported transactional sex compared to 23.8%(95%CI: 13.0%, 34.6%)of women who reported eleven ACEs (P<0.001). Transactional sex was strongly associated withcombination methamphetamine and opiate use as well ascondomless sex. Women who reported transactional sex were more likely to report being diagnosed with a bacterial STI and hepatitis C; however, HIV screening and pre-exposure prophylaxis knowledge and use were low. Conclusions: In a sample ofwomen of low socioeconomic status in Portland, Oregon, transactional sex was characterized by marginalized identities, homelessness, childhood trauma, sexual violence, substance use, and sexual vulnerability to HIV/STI. Multi-level interventions that address these social, behavioral, and trauma-related factors and increase access to biomedical HIV prevention are critical to the sexual health of women who engage in transactional sex.
... A recent report supported a 2-question ACE screen to reduce survey time, potentially making this assessment efficient. 29 If the 2-question screener is equally effective in identifying families at risk for transition difficulties, the items could be incorporated into intake forms or history and physical documents. Our data also do not reveal if there is an advantage to screen for only ACEs or only resilience; it is likely that screening for both is important. ...
Article
Background and objectives: Adults with a history of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) (eg, abuse) have suboptimal health outcomes. Resilience may blunt this effect. The effect of parental ACEs (and resilience) on coping with challenges involving their children (eg, hospitalization) is unclear. We sought to quantify ACE and resilience scores for parents of hospitalized children and evaluate their associations to parental coping after discharge. Methods: We conducted a prospective cohort study at a children's hospital (August 2015-May 2016). Eligible participants were English-speaking parents of children hospitalized on the Hospital Medicine or Complex Services team. The ACE questionnaire measured the responding parent's past adversity (ACE range: 0-10; ≥4 ACEs = high adversity). The Brief Resilience Scale (BRS) was used to measure their resilience (range: 1-5; higher is better). The primary outcome was measured by using the Post-Discharge Coping Difficulty Scale via a phone call 14 days post-discharge (range: 0-100; higher is worse). Associations were assessed by using multivariable linear regression, adjusting for parent- and patient-level covariates. Results: A total of 671 (81% of eligible parents) responded. Respondents were primarily women (90%), employed (66%), and had at least a high school degree (65%); 60% of children were white, 54% were publicly insured. Sixty-four percent of parents reported ≥1 ACE; 19% had ≥4 ACEs. The mean Brief Resilience Scale score for parents was 3.95. In adjusted analyses, higher ACEs and lower resilience were significantly associated with more difficulty coping after discharge. Conclusions: More parental adversity and less resilience are associated with parental coping difficulties after discharge, representing potentially important levers for transition-focused interventions.
... Determining the essential questions to efficiently identify children and adolescents who have been exposed to adverse experiences requires further research. Briefer measures (i.e., fewer questions) that approximate the reliability and validity of more comprehensive measures have been explored for adult respondents (Hulme, 2004;Mersky et al., 2017;Thabrew, de Sylva, & Romans, 2012;Wade, Becker, Bevans, Ford, & Forrest, 2017). Developing brief pediatric measures could greatly improve feasibility for use by pediatric practitioners, and single questions such as Since the last time I saw your child, has anything really scary or upsetting happened to your child or anyone in your family? ...
Article
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Exposure to childhood adversity can result in negative behavioral and physical health outcomes due to potential long-term embedding into regulatory biological processes. Screening for exposure to adversity is a critical first step in identifying children at risk for developing a toxic stress response. We searched PubMed, PsycArticles, and CINAHL for studies published between January 1, 2012, and December 31, 2016, as well as other sources, to identify potential tools for measuring cumulative adversity in children and adolescents. We identified 32 tools and examined them for adversity categories, target population, administration time, administration qualifications and method, and reliability and validity. We also created a list of recommended tools that would be feasible for use by pediatric practitioners in most types of practice. This review provides a starting point for mobilizing screening in pediatric settings, highlighting the challenges with existing tools, and potential issues in the development and evaluation of future tools.
... Human adaptability is not an argument for a "wait and see" approach. The Adverse Childhood Experiences study (Felitti et al., 1998;Wade, Becker, Bevans, Ford, & Forrest, 2017) has clearly identified the degrees and nature of risk and, in combination, the significant adverse impact over the life course including death. ...
Article
This paper identifies some of the key debates about the evidence from outcomes for children placed in foster care, the challenging issues in the design of the system, how it operates and what the outcomes for children look like. The paper explores foster care as being based in the evolution of the human species in its capacity to adapt, problem-solve and identify resources through cooperative effort between individuals and social groupings with the family as key. An essential attribute of families and parenting is the ability to form close, meaningful and sustained relationships that provide security, stability and opportunity, including connectedness to the community and the resources that are a part of this. Family forms the basis for the child being able to access personal, social, cultural and economic capital both in the present and into the future. One of the serious issues for foster care is the short-term basis of that commitment and, even when it lasts over the longer term, the care arrangement typically ends as the child reaches adulthood. These issues are explored through the concept of resilience and place foster care within an ecological framework that evolves over time.
... Child physical abuse was the only ACE event that was consistently related to all six serious chronic diseases studied, as reported in a ten country study, thus capturing a great deal of the variance in explaining subsequent harms from ACE [10]. Recent psychometric evaluations documented that use of a 2-item measure that includes parental alcohol and childhood emotional abuse items can correctly identify people with ACE experiences with 90% sensitivity [79]. The omission of sexual and emotional abuse may result in an underestimate of the actual impact of adverse events on long-term health and diabetes. ...
Article
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Background: Type 2 diabetes is a major public health problem with considerable personal and societal costs. Adverse childhood experiences (ACE) are associated with a number of serious and chronic health problems in adulthood, but these experiences have not been adequately studied in relation to diabetes in a US national sample. The association between ACE and poor health can be partially explained by greater risky health behaviors (RHB) such as smoking, heavy alcohol use, or obesity. Few studies have examined ACE in relation to adult onset Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) taking into account the role of RHB. Using longitudinal data from a representative US population sample followed over 30 years, this study examines the impact of ACE on the risk of diabetes onset. Methods: Data from the 1982 to 2012 waves of the 1979 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth were analyzed, spanning ages 14 to 56. Bivariate and discrete-time survival models were used to assess the relationships between ACE and RHB including smoking, alcohol use, and obesity, and subsequent onset of diabetes. Results: T2DM was reported by almost 10% of participants. Over 30% of women and 21% of men reported 2+ ACE events. Women reporting 2-3 or 4+ ACE events were more likely to develop diabetes with the mean number of ACE events being greater in those with diabetes compared to without (1.28 vs.1.05, p < .0001). For men there was no significant association between ACE and diabetes onset. For women, ACE was associated with heavy drinking, current smoking, and obesity. For men, ACE was associated with being underweight and daily smoking. In multivariate discrete-time survival models, each additional ACE increased risk of T2DM onset (ORadj = 1.14; 95% CI 1.02-1.26) for women but not for men. The relationship in women was attenuated when controlling for body mass index (BMI). Conclusion: ACE predicted diabetes onset among women, though this relationship was attenuated when controlling for BMI. Being overweight or obese was significantly more common among women with a history of ACE, which suggests BMI may be on the pathway from ACE to diabetes onset for women.
... Together, these studies of the clusters of ACEs experienced by children lend some support to a reduction in screening items that could be used in practice. Work has been conducted with retrospective self-reports by adults using the BRFSS-ACEs to develop a short form (Wade et al. 2017). The authors developed a two-item BRFSS-ACE screener, household alcohol, and child emotional abuse, which could be used to determine the need for additional screening. ...
Article
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Researchers have documented the ways in which children’s parenting and home environments impact their social, emotional, and cognitive skills. There is scientific consensus that certain adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), particularly in the absence of a nurturing caregiver, decrease the likelihood that children will develop optimally. Many ACEs co-occur, thereby increasing the number of adversities children experience. This study examined the interrelatedness of ACEs for 14-month-old children from the Early Head Start Research and Evaluation Project (N = 2361). Using latent class analysis, three classes were identified: ACEs-low (N = 1431, 60.6%), ACEs-parent maltreatment (N = 636, 26.9%), and ACEs-household dysfunction (N = 294, 12.5%). Class membership was significantly associated with related parenting constructs. Children in families with greater household dysfunction (ACEs-household dysfunction) had parents with the highest levels of parenting stress and the lowest levels of self-efficacy, but who were knowledgeable of infant development and were observed to be moderately supportive in play with their child. Parents at risk for child maltreatment (ACEs-parent maltreatment) had moderate levels of stress and self-efficacy, but the least knowledge of development and were observed to be the least supportiveness in play. Our study suggests that infants experience constellations of ACEs, which are differentially associated with parenting characteristics and behaviors. Results lend credibility to ACE screening in infancy and could be used to inform intervention efforts and the development of more efficient, sensitive screening methods.
... In order to take into account the influential conclusions in the literature on adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), the following three variables represent adverse experiences when growing up: (i) the respondent's family had difficulties meeting ends meet sometimes, often or always (childhood poverty); (ii) a parent or other adult in the household often swore at, insulted or put down the respondent (domestic abuse); and (iii) the respondent lived with a problem drinker, alcoholic or drug user (substance abuse). The ACEs literature suggests that childhood adversities have lasting effects till adulthood, including poor mental and economic outcomes (Wade Jr et al., 2017), thus if ACEs is the root cause for both low wages and poor mental health, then the significant association between low wages and poor psychological outlook might be due to ACEs, and not low wages. ...
Article
With labour markets already polarised in industrialised economies, if Covid-19 worsens this polarity, young people could be more severely affected. This is because their entry into a post-pandemic economy has ramifications for their divergent or convergent career trajectories far into the future. Therefore, on the premise that work life is central to quality of life, this article assesses the effects of low wage and Covid-19 on the psychological outlook of young people in Singapore. We found that Covid-19 did worsen polarisation. On average, higher wage workers telecommuted more and had more work, but low wage young workers bore the brunt of earnings loss and job disruption. Low wage respondents also experienced poorer psychological well-being, even after adverse child experiences, highest educational qualification and occupation type were controlled for. However, higher wage workers might be more psychologically affected by the Covid-19 impacts. This might be because low earning workers are more accustomed to employment instability. These findings suggest the urgency of policy attention to help low wage young workers recover from Covid-19.
... Trauma. We used the 11-item Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) questionnaire to assess experiences of emotional, physical, and sexual abuse (2 items); physical and emotional neglect; parental separation or divorce; and, household substance use, mental illness, partner violence, and incarceration prior to age 18. 25 To assess the cumulative effects of ACE, we tallied the number of ACE endorsed by each participant to create a continuous variable ranging from zero to eleven. We also inquired about sexual intimate partner violence in the prior 12 months. ...
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Full-text available
Background: Women who report transactional sex are at increased risk for HIV and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs). However, in the United States, social, behavioral, and trauma-related vulnerabilities associated with transactional sex are understudied and data on access to biomedical HIV prevention among women who report transactional sex are limited. Methods: In 2016, we conducted a population-based, cross-sectional survey of women of low socioeconomic status recruited via respondent-driven sampling in Portland, Oregon. We calculated the prevalence and, assessed the correlates of, transactional sex using generalized linear models accounting for sampling design. We also compared health outcomes, HIV screening, and knowledge and uptake of HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) between women who did and did not report transactional sex. Results: Of 334 women, 13.6% reported transactional sex (95% confidence interval [CI]: 6.8%, 20.5%). Women who reported transactional sex were older, more likely to identify as black, to identify as lesbian or bisexual, to experience childhood trauma and recent sexual violence, and to have been homeless. Six percent (95%CI: 1.8%, 10.5%) of women with no adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) reported transactional sex compared to 23.8% (95%CI: 13.0%, 34.6%) of women who reported eleven ACEs ( P <0.001). Transactional sex was strongly associated with combination methamphetamine and opiate use as well as condomless sex. Women who reported transactional sex were more likely to report being diagnosed with a bacterial STI and hepatitis C; however, HIV screening and pre-exposure prophylaxis knowledge and use were low. Conclusions: In a sample of women of low socioeconomic status in Portland, Oregon, transactional sex was characterized by marginalized identities, homelessness, childhood trauma, sexual violence, substance use, and sexual vulnerability to HIV/STI. Multi-level interventions that address these social, behavioral, and trauma-related factors and increase access to biomedical HIV prevention are critical to the sexual health of women who engage in transactional sex.
... We used the 11-item Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) questionnaire to assess experiences of emotional, physical, and sexual abuse (2 items); physical and emotional neglect; parental separation or divorce; and, household substance use, mental illness, partner violence, and incarceration prior to age 18 [25]. To assess the cumulative effects of ACE, we tallied the number of ACE endorsed by each participant to create a continuous variable ranging from zero to eleven. ...
Article
Full-text available
Background Women who report transactional sex are at increased risk for HIV and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs). However, in the United States, social, behavioral, and trauma-related vulnerabilities associated with transactional sex are understudied and data on access to biomedical HIV prevention among women who report transactional sex are limited. Methods In 2016, we conducted a population-based, cross-sectional survey of women of low socioeconomic status recruited via respondent-driven sampling in Portland, Oregon. We calculated the prevalence and, assessed the correlates of, transactional sex using generalized linear models accounting for sampling design. We also compared health outcomes, HIV screening, and knowledge and uptake of HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) between women who did and did not report transactional sex. Results Of 334 women, 13.6% reported transactional sex (95% confidence interval [CI]: 6.8, 20.5%). Women who reported transactional sex were older, more likely to identify as black, to identify as lesbian or bisexual, to experience childhood trauma and recent sexual violence, and to have been homeless. Six percent (95% CI: 1.8, 10.5%) of women with no adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) reported transactional sex compared to 23.8% (95% CI: 13.0, 34.6%) of women who reported eleven ACEs ( P < 0.001). Transactional sex was strongly associated with combination methamphetamine and opiate use as well as condomless sex. Women who reported transactional sex were more likely to report being diagnosed with a bacterial STI and hepatitis C; however, HIV screening and pre-exposure prophylaxis knowledge and use were low. Conclusions In a sample of women of low socioeconomic status in Portland, Oregon, transactional sex was characterized by marginalized identities, homelessness, childhood trauma, sexual violence, substance use, and sexual vulnerability to HIV/STI. Multi-level interventions that address these social, behavioral, and trauma-related factors and increase access to biomedical HIV prevention are critical to the sexual health of women who engage in transactional sex.
... Participants in this study did grow up in socioeconomic diverse homes, approximately half having fathers raised in poor, inner-city areas. The frequency of adverse childhood events reported in this study was comparable to other samples, which is consistent with past research that adverse childhood events are prevalent across sociodemographic groups (Taylor et al., 2004;Wade, Becker, Bevans, Ford, & Forrest, 2017). It will be important for future investigations to replicate these findings with more diverse groups. ...
Article
Previous measures of childhood adversity have enabled the identification of powerful links with later-life wellbeing. The challenge for the next generation of childhood adversity assessment is to better characterize those links through comprehensive, fine-grained measurement strategies. The expanded, retrospective measure of childhood adversity presented here leveraged analytic and theoretical advances to examine multiple domains of childhood adversity at both the microlevel of siblings and the macrolevel of families. Despite the fact that childhood adversity most often occurs in the context of families, there is a dearth of studies that have validated childhood adversity measures on multiple members of the same families. Multilevel psychometric analyses of this childhood adversity measure administered to 1,194 siblings in 500 families indicated that the additional categories of childhood adversity were widely endorsed, and increased understanding of the sources and sequalae of childhood adversity when partitioned into within- and between-family levels. For example, multilevel confirmatory factor analyses (MCFAs) indicated that financial stress, unsafe neighborhood, and parental unemployment were often experienced similarly by siblings in the same families and stemmed primarily from family wide (between-family) sources. On the other hand, being bullied and school stressors were often experienced differently by siblings and derived primarily from individual (within-family) processes. Multilevel structural equation modeling (MSEM) further illuminated differential criterion validity correlations between these categories of childhood adversity with midlife psychological, social, and physical health. Expanded, multidomain, and multilevel measures of childhood adversity appear to hold promise for identifying layered causes and consequences of adverse childhood experiences.
... Polyvictimization research shows the importance of incorporating peer and community victimization into measures of dose (Finkelhor et al., 2007). Scholars have also called for incorporating experiences of discrimination, exposure to community violence, and socioeconomic status into our understanding of trauma and adversity (Cronholm et al., 2015;Wade et al., 2017Wade et al., , 2014. More broadly, we need to address systemic adversities that can create ongoing or repeated exposures to trauma for entire communities, such as poverty, community violence, and racism (Comas-Díaz et al., 2019;W. ...
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The Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) studies transformed our understanding of the true burden of trauma. Notable elements of Felitti and colleagues' findings include the influence of adversity on many physical as well as psychological problems and the persistence of impacts decades after the traumas occurred. In this article, we make the case that the most revolutionary finding was the discovery of a strong dose-response effect, with marked increases in risk observed for individuals who reported four or more adversities. Over the past two decades, our understanding of the cumulative burden of trauma has expanded further, with recognition that experiences outside the family, including peer victimization, community violence, and racism, also contribute to trauma dose. Recent research has provided evidence for the pervasiveness of trauma, which we now realize affects most people, even by the end of adolescence. Extensive scientific evidence has documented that more than 40 biopsychosocial outcomes, including leading causes of adult morbidity and mortality, are associated with adverse childhood experiences, measured by dose. We summarize the state of science and explain how ACEs built a movement for uncovering mechanisms responsible for these relationships. Perhaps unexpectedly, the pervasiveness of trauma also expands our understanding of resilience, which is likewise more common than previously recognized. Emerging research on positive childhood experiences and poly-strengths suggests that individual, family, and community strengths may also contribute to outcomes in a dose-response relationship. We close with an agenda for research, intervention, and policy to reduce the societal burden of adversity and promote resilience. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2021 APA, all rights reserved).
... A promising study utilizing data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System to measure the validity of a new 2-item ACE screening tool demonstrated sensitivity between 70% and 99% and a specificity between 66% and 94% as compared to an 11-item ACE screening tool for detecting ACEs related to abuse and household stressors -two primary categories identified from the original CDC-Kaiser Permanente Study. [10,16] A valid, reliable screening tool with the ability to detect such ACEs with two questions may peak the interests of providers who appreciate the significance of ACEs on their patients' health but are hesitant to screen due to time constraints. A positive screening then provides valuable information regarding the social determinants of a patient's health -factors all primary care providers are trained to be aware of, look for, and especially consider for any given treatment plan. ...
... Indeed, many studies have included additional ACE items, such as discrimination, poverty, loss of a loved one to improve identification and prevention of childhood trauma and subsequent outcomes (Bethell et al., 2017;Finkelhor et al., 2013). However, short ACEs screeners have proven effective at identifying those who experienced ACEs and subsequent health outcomes using as few as two ACE items (Wade, Becker, Bevans, Ford, & Forrest, 2017). Second, response bias may have influenced responses to the ACE items, which are retrospectively reported, and SES variables. ...
Article
Importance: Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) are prevalent, preventable, and a public health issue that cycles from one generation to the next with serious implications for health and wellbeing, particularly for racial and ethnic minority families. Research is needed to identify factors, including those related to economic position (i.e., wage, net family wealth, home ownership), that break the cycle of ACEs and inform decisions about policies, practices, and programs. Objective To determine whether economic position moderates the association between mother’s ACE score and child’s ACE score and whether these pathways differ by race and ethnicity. Design: Conducted regression and moderation analysis using mother-child dyadic data from panel surveys, stratified by race. The simple slopes for the interactions were probed to determine the magnitude and significance of the interaction. Setting: Secondary data analysis utilizing data from two cohorts of the National Longitudinal Surveys: 1) National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979; and 2) National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 Children and Young Adults. Participants: The sample included 6,261 children and 2,967 matched mothers. Main Outcomes (s) and Measure(s): The outcome variable was the child’s ACE score. Mother’s ACE score was the independent variable. Three economic position moderators were examined: mother’s and her spouse’s average wage and salary, average net family wealth, and percent of time owning a home during her child’s first five years of life. Results Mother’s ACE score was positively associated with her child’s ACE score. Economic position was a significant moderator for Black families. Higher wages and net family wealth during children’s first five years were associated with weakened associations between mother and child ACEs for Black families. For Hispanic families, higher wages and salary were significantly associated with weakened associations. Among White families, higher net family wealth was associated with stronger ACEs transmission. Conclusions and Relevance: Taken together, these findings highlight the important role that economic position may play on breaking the cycle of ACEs. This information can inform decisions about what public assistance policies, practices, and programs may be used to improve economic stability among families as an effective ACEs prevention strategy, and for whom these strategies might be most effective at reducing the cycle of ACEs.
... CHBRP identified one study that assessed the feasibility and validity of shortening the 11-item measure of ACEs that is part of the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) to create an instrument that could be used to screen adults to identify those who experienced significant adversity during childhood (Wade 2017). Shorter instruments may be easier for providers to administer during office visits. ...
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California Senate Bill 428 analyzed by CHBRP would require DMHC-and CDI-regulated plans and policies to provide coverage for adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) screenings.
... The original ACE questionnaire described earlier has been well validated as a reliable measure of childhood trauma (1)(2)(3)(4) . The usage of condensed versions has also been found to be valid and reliable (39,40) . Thus, a modified version of the original ACE questionnaire was used in the present study with only ten questions, each reflecting one of the ten identified ACEs of emotional abuse, physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional neglect, physical neglect, parents divorced, mother physically abused, lived with an alcohol or drug abuser, had a household member who was mentally ill or attempted suicide, and had a household member go to prison. ...
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Childhood trauma is strongly associated with poor health outcomes. Although many studies have found associations between adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), a well-established indicator of childhood trauma and diet-related health outcomes, few have explored the relationship between ACEs and diet quality, despite growing literature in epidemiology and neurobiology suggesting that childhood trauma has an important but poorly understood relationship with diet. Thus, we performed a cross-sectional study of the association of ACEs and adult diet quality in the Southern Community Cohort Study, a largely low-income and racially diverse population in the southeastern United States. We used ordinal logistic regression to estimate the association of ACEs with the Healthy Eating Index-2010 (HEI-10) score among 30 854 adults aged 40–79 enrolled from 2002 to 2009. Having experienced any ACE was associated with higher odds of worse HEI-10 among all (odds ratio (OR) 1⋅22; 95 % confidence interval (CI) 1⋅17, 1⋅27), and for all race–sex groups, and remained significant after adjustment for adult income. The increasing number of ACEs was also associated with increasing odds of a worse HEI-10 (OR for 4+ ACEs: 1⋅34; 95 % CI 1⋅27, 1⋅42). The association with worse HEI-10 score was especially strong for ACEs in the household dysfunction category, including having a family member in prison (OR 1⋅34; 95 % CI 1⋅25, 1⋅42) and parents divorced (OR 1⋅25; 95 % CI 1⋅20, 1⋅31). In summary, ACEs are associated with poor adult diet quality, independent of race, sex and adult income. Research is needed to explore whether trauma intervention strategies can impact adult diet quality.
... Adversity and Trauma. Childhood maltreatment before age 18 by parents or guardians was assessed at the phase one iCOR baseline by three questions drawing on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) Adverse Childhood Experience module (i.e., how often parents or other adults in the home ever slapped, hit, kicked, punched, or beat each other up; hit, beat, kicked, or physically hurt [excluding spanking] the respondent in any way; swear at, insult, or put the respondent down; Chronbach's α = 0.66) (Wade et al., 2017). Respondents who responded affirmatively to at least one item, indicating that the behavior had occurred at least once, were coded one for childhood maltreatment. ...
Article
Interpersonal conflicts are inevitable, but the probability that conflicts involve aggressive behavior varies. Prior research that has tended to focus on victimization in intimate partnerships reported through retrospective designs. Addressing these limitations, the current study examines daily reports of behaving aggressively in any conflict across relationships in a sample of 512 young adults drawn from the nationally representative iCOR cohort. Respondent attitudes and affective measures were collected at the end of the daily data collection period. Regression methods were applied to examine the probability and frequency of aggression, investigating early and recent exposure to adversities, attitudes, self-control, affect and emotional states, and alcohol use behavior. Recent adversities and the propensity to endorse a defensive honor code attitude, consistent with theory and retrospective studies of aggression, predicted both prevalence and frequency of aggressive behavior. The associations of childhood maltreatment and self-control with the prevalence of behaving aggressively were as expected, but these constructs were significantly associated with the frequency of aggression with unexpected, inverse directionality. Moreover, respondents’ affect and other emotional states were only associated with the frequency, not the prevalence, of aggressive behavior. Overall, this daily data collection constructively distinguished risk and protective factors for behaving aggressively more often. Further research is needed to disentangle the extent to which affective states drive or is a consequence of frequent aggressive behavior.
... The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) short ACE tool was used as a basis for identifying within each child's case notes whether an ACE had occurred at any point in their life. Whilst a number of tools are available to measure childhood maltreatment (see Meinck et al., 2016), the validated CDC short tool has been shown to be reliable in retrospective assessments of adverse childhood experiences (Bynum et al., 2010;Von Cheong, Sinnott, Dahly, & Kearney, 2017;Wade, Becker, Bevans, Ford, & Forrest, 2017). The researcher recorded exposure to any ACE when it had been identified in the case notes by professionals who had worked with either the child or their family. ...
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Background Despite strong associations between adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and poor health, few studies have examined the cumulative impact of ACEs on causes of childhood mortality. Methods This study explored if data routinely collected by child death overview panels (CDOPs) could be used to measure ACE exposure and examined associations between ACEs and child death categories. Data covering four years (2012–2016) of cases from a CDOP in North West England were examined. Results Of 489 cases, 20% were identified as having ≥4 ACEs. Deaths of children with ≥4 ACEs were 22.26 (5.72–86.59) times more likely (than those with 0 ACEs) to be classified as ‘avoidable and non-natural’ causes (e.g., injury, abuse, suicide; compared with ‘genetic and medical conditions’). Such children were also 3.44 (1.75–6.73) times more likely to have their deaths classified as ‘chronic and acute conditions’. Conclusions This study evidences that a history of ACEs can be compiled from CDOP records. Measurements of ACE prevalence in retrospective studies will miss individuals who died in childhood and may underestimate the impacts of ACEs on lifetime health. Strong associations between ACEs and deaths from ‘chronic and acute conditions’ suggest that ACEs may be important factors in child deaths in addition to those classified as ‘avoidable and non-natural’. Results add to an already compelling case for ACE prevention in the general population and families affected by child health problems. Broader use of routinely collected child death records could play an important role in improving multi-agency awareness of ACEs and their negative health and mortality risks as well in the development of ACE informed responses.
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This study examines how anti-immigrant policies affect the physical health of Latina/os in the United States. Merging two unique datasets: sum of anti-immigrant policies by state from 2005-2011 and a 2011 Robert Wood Johnson Center for Health Policy nationally representative sample of Latina/os (n=1,200), we estimate a series of logistic regressions to understand how anti-immigrant legislations are affecting the health of Latina/os. Our modeling approach takes into consideration Latinos' diverse experience, context that is widely overlooked in datasets that treat Latina/os as a homogeneous ethnic group. Our findings suggest that an increase in anti-immigrant laws enacted by a state decreases the probability of respondents reporting optimal health, even when controlling for other relevant factors, such as citizenship status, language of interview, and interethnic variation. The implication and significance of this work has tremendous impacts for scholars, policy makers, health service providers and applied researchers interested in reducing health disparities among minority populations.
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Researchers have documented that Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), particularly in the absence of a nurturing caregiver, can negatively impact cognitive, social-emotional, and physical development. ACEs can be co-occurring, which increases the number of adversities that individuals may experience. Using data from the Early Head Start Research and Evaluation Project (N = 2361), this study examined the interrelatedness of ACEs for 14-month-old children. Three classes of ACEs exposures were identified: ACEs-Low (N = 1431, 60.6%), ACEs-Parent Maltreatment Risk (N = 636, 26.9%), and ACEs-Household Dysfunction (N = 294, 12.5%). Class membership was significantly associated with children’s cognitive, social-emotional, and physical development. Children in the ACEs-Parent Maltreatment Risk group had lower developmental scores across many domains than children in the ACEs-Low group, including cognitive and language development, and social-emotional measures. Children in families with greater household dysfunction (ACEs-Household Dysfunction) had fewer differences in development from the ACEs-Low group of children, primarily in domains that measure emotionality and in parent rating of health. Our study suggests that infants experience patterns of ACEs, which are differentially associated with outcomes at 14 months of age. Results highlight the need for informed early intervention efforts to mitigate the effects of ACEs.
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This paper will consider ACEs as a chaotic concept that prioritises risk and obscures the material and social conditions of the lives of its objects. It will show how the various definitions of ACEs offer no cohesive body of definitive evidence and measurement, and lead to a great deal of over-claiming. it discusses how ACEs have found their time and place, locating a variety of social ills within the child's home, family and parenting behaviours. It argues that because ACEs are confined to intra-familial circumstances, and largely to narrow parent-child relations, issues outside of parental control are not addressed. It concludes that ACEs form a poor body of evidence for family policy and decision-making about child protection and that different and less stigmatising solutions are hiding in plain sight.
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This study examined the association of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) with early-onset chronic conditions. We analyzed data from the 2011–2012 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), which included 86,968 respondents representing a nine-state adult population of 32 million. ACE questions included physical, emotional, and sexual abuse; substance use, mental illness or incarceration of a household member; domestic violence, and parental separation. Outcomes included chronic conditions (cardiovascular disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cancer, depression, diabetes, and prediabetes); overall health status; and days of poor mental or physical health in the past month. We estimated Poisson regression models of the likelihood of chronic conditions and poor health status comparing adults reporting ≥4 ACEs to respondents with no ACEs within three age strata: 18–34, 35–54 and ≥55 years. The prevalence of ≥4 ACEs was highest among youngest respondents (19%). There was a dose-response gradient between ACE scores and outcomes except for cancer in older adults. Among younger respondents, those reporting ≥4 ACEs had two to four times the risk for each chronic condition and poor health status compared to respondents reporting no ACEs. With few exceptions (depression, poor mental and physical health in the past month), incidence rate ratios were highest in young adults and successively decreased among older adults. This study is among the first to analyze patterns of association between ACEs and adult health disaggregated by age. Young adults with high ACE scores are at increased risk of early-onset chronic disease. Trauma-informed care and ACEs prevention are crucial public health priorities.
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Addressing adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) in primary care pediatric practice is riddled with potential pitfalls that prevent most providers from implementing ACE or toxic stress screening in their practices. However, the growing body of literature and clinician experience about ACE screening shows how this practice is also ripe with possibilities beyond just the treatment of trauma-related diagnoses and for the prevention of intergenerational transmission of toxic stress. This article reviews the current state of screening for ACEs and toxic stress in practice, describes how pediatricians and clinics have overcome pitfalls during implementation of practice-based screening initiatives, and discusses possibilities for the future of primary care-based screening. [Pediatr Ann. 2019;48(7):e257-e261.].
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Introduction Adverse childhood experiences contribute to both short- and long-term health issues and negative health behaviors that affect the individual as well as families and communities. Exposure to ≥4 of the 11 adverse childhood experiences (high adverse childhood experiences) compounds the problems in later life. This study assesses the associations among tobacco use, adverse childhood experiences, mental health, and community health. Methods This study was a secondary data analysis utilizing a large 2019 data set from a Community Health Needs Assessment in Florida (N=14,056). Investigators utilized inferential statistics to determine adverse childhood experiences as a predictor of tobacco use (vaping and cigarette use). In addition, they examined whether a shorter, 2-question adverse childhood experience scale was equivalent to the full scale when predicting tobacco use. Results The results indicated that parental divorce was the most common household stressor, followed by mental illness and alcoholism. High adverse childhood experiences were found to be most prominent in marginalized individuals. For those individuals experiencing ≥4 adverse childhood experiences, parental divorce continued to rank high, followed by mental illness. Household stressors included emotional and physical abuse as the most prevalent in the ≥4 adverse childhood experience group. High adverse childhood experiences were associated with current cigarette smoking (AOR=1.56) after controlling for individual mental health and social/community health variables. High adverse childhood experiences were also associated with E-cigarette use (AOR=1.81) but not dual cigarette/E-cigarette use. Social and community health was inversely associated with tobacco use. A 2-item adverse childhood experiences measure was sufficient in identifying tobacco users. Conclusions Including adverse childhood experiences in community needs assessments provides important information for tobacco control efforts and prevention of chronic disease.
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Background: Women's experience of childhood adversity may contribute to their children's risk of obesity. Possible causal pathways include higher maternal weight and gestational weight gain, which have been associated with both maternal childhood adversity and obesity in offspring. Methods: This study included 6718 mother-child pairs from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 in the United States (1979-2012). We applied multiple log-binomial regression models to estimate associations between three markers of childhood adversity (physical abuse, household alcoholism, and household mental illness) and offspring obesity in childhood. We estimated natural direct effects to evaluate mediation by prepregnancy BMI and gestational weight gain. Results: Among every 100 mothers who reported physical abuse in childhood, there were 3.7 (95% confidence interval: -0.1 to 7.5) excess cases of obesity in 2- to 5-year olds compared with mothers who did not report physical abuse. Differences in prepregnancy BMI, but not gestational weight gain, accounted for 25.7% of these excess cases. There was no evidence of a similar relationship for household alcoholism or mental illness or for obesity in older children. Conclusions: In this national, prospective cohort study, prepregnancy BMI partially explained an association between maternal physical abuse in childhood and obesity in preschool-age children. These findings underscore the importance of life-course exposures in the etiology of child obesity and the potential multi-generational consequences of child abuse. Research is needed to determine whether screening for childhood abuse and treatment of its sequelae could strengthen efforts to prevent obesity in mothers and their children.
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Objective Emergency Departments (EDs) offer an opportunity to improve the care of patients with at-risk and dependent drinking by teaching staff to screen, perform brief intervention and refer to treatment (SBIRT). We describe here the implementation at 14 Academic EDs of a structured SBIRT curriculum to determine if this learning experience improves provider beliefs and practices. Methods ED faculty, residents, nurses, physician extenders, social workers, and Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) were surveyed prior to participating in either a two hour interactive workshops with case simulations, or a web-based program (www.ed.bmc.org/sbirt). A pre-post repeated measures design assessed changes in provider beliefs and practices at three and 12 months post-exposure. Results Among 402 ED providers, 74% reported < 10 hours of prior professional alcohol-related education and 78% had < 2 hours exposure in the previous year. At 3-month follow-up, scores for self-reported confidence in ability, responsibility to intervene, and actual utilization of SBIRT skills all improved significantly over baseline. Gains decreased somewhat at 12 months, but remained above baseline. Length of time in practice was positively associated with SBIRT utilization, controlling for gender, race and type of profession. Persistent barriers included time limitations and lack of referral resources. Conclusions ED providers respond favorably to SBIRT. Changes in utilization were substantial at three months post-exposure to a standardized curriculum, but less apparent after 12 months. Booster sessions, trained assistants and infrastructure supports may be needed to sustain changes over the longer term
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Objectives—This report presents final 2011 data on the 10 leading causes of death in the United States by age, sex, race, and Hispanic origin. Leading causes of infant, neonatal, and postneonatal death are also presented. This report supplements ‘‘Deaths: Final Data for 2011,’’ the National Center for Health Statistics’ annual report of final mortality statistics. Methods— Data in this report are based on information from all death certificates filed in the 50 states and the District of Columbia in 2011. Causes of death classified by the International Classification of Diseases, 10th Revision (ICD–10) are ranked according to the number of deaths assigned to rankable causes. Cause-of-death statistics are based on the underlying cause of death. Results— In 2011, the 10 leading causes of death were, in rank order: Diseases of heart; Malignant neoplasms; Chronic lower respiratory diseases; Cerebrovascular diseases; Accidents (unintentional injuries); Alzheimer’s disease; Diabetes mellitus; Influenza and pneumonia; Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome and nephrosis; and Intentional self-harm (suicide). They accounted for 74% of all deaths occurring in the United States. Differences in the rankings are evident by age, sex, race, and Hispanic origin. Leading causes of infant death for 2011 were, in rank order: Congenital malformations, deformations and chromosomal abnormalities; Disorders related to short gestation and low birth weight, not elsewhere classified; Sudden infant death syndrome; Newborn affected by maternal complications of pregnancy; Accidents (unintentional injuries); Newborn affected by complications of placenta, cord and membranes; Bacterial sepsis of newborn; Respiratory distress of newborn; Diseases of the circulatory system; and Neonatal hemorrhage. Important variations in the leading causes of infant death are noted for the neonatal and postneonatal periods.
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Advances in a wide range of biological, behavioral, and social sciences are expanding our understanding of how early environmental influences (the ecology) and genetic predispositions (the biologic program) affect learning capacities, adaptive behaviors, lifelong physical and mental health, and adult productivity. A supporting technical report from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) presents an integrated ecobiodevelopmental framework to assist in translating these dramatic advances in developmental science into improved health across the life span. Pediatricians are now armed with new information about the adverse effects of toxic stress on brain development, as well as a deeper understanding of the early life origins of many adult diseases. As trusted authorities in child health and development, pediatric providers must now complement the early identification of developmental concerns with a greater focus on those interventions and community investments that reduce external threats to healthy brain growth. To this end, AAP endorses a developing leadership role for the entire pediatric community-one that mobilizes the scientific expertise of both basic and clinical researchers, the family-centered care of the pediatric medical home, and the public influence of AAP and its state chapters-to catalyze fundamental change in early childhood policy and services. AAP is committed to leveraging science to inform the development of innovative strategies to reduce the precipitants of toxic stress in young children and to mitigate their negative effects on the course of development and health across the life span. Pediatrics 2012;129:e224-e231
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Informed by a largely secondary and quantitative literature, efforts to improve care and outcomes for complex patients with high levels of emergency and hospital-based health care utilization have offered mixed results. This qualitative study identifies psychosocial factors and life experiences described by these patients that may be important to their care needs. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 19 patients of the Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers' Care Management Team. Investigators coded transcripts using a priori and inductively-derived codes, then identified 3 key themes: (1) Early-life instability and traumas, including parental loss, unstable or violent relationships, and transiency, informed many participants' health and health care experiences; (2) Many "high utilizers" described a history of difficult interactions with health care providers during adulthood; (3) Over half of the participants described the importance to their well-being of positive and "caring" relationships with primary health care providers and the outreach team. Additionally, the transient and vulnerable nature of this complex population posed challenges to follow-up, both for research and care delivery. These themes illuminate potentially important hypotheses to be explored in more generalizable samples using robust and longitudinal methods. Future work should explore the prevalence and impact of adverse childhood experiences among "high utilizers," and the different types of relationships they have with providers. Investigators should test new modes of care delivery that attend to patients' trauma histories. This qualitative study was well suited to provide insight into the life stories of these complex, vulnerable patients, informing research questions for further investigation.
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Tablet computer-based screening may have the potential for detecting patients at risk for opioid abuse in the emergency department (ED). Study objectives were a) to determine if the revised Screener and Opioid Assessment for Patients with Pain (SOAPP®-R), a 24-question previously paper-based screening tool for opioid abuse potential, could be administered on a tablet computer to an ED patient population; b) to demonstrate that >90% of patients can complete the electronic screener without assistance in <5 minutes and; c) to determine patient ease of use with screening on a tablet computer. This was a cross-sectional convenience sample study of patients seen in an urban academic ED. SOAPP®-R was programmed on a tablet computer by study investigators. Inclusion criteria were patients ages ≥18 years who were being considered for discharge with a prescription for an opioid analgesic. Exclusion criteria included inability to understand English or physical disability preventing use of the tablet. 93 patients were approached for inclusion and 82 (88%) provided consent. Fifty-two percent (n=43) of subjects were male; 46% (n=38) of subjects were between 18-35 years, and 54% (n=44) were >35 years. One hundred percent of subjects completed the screener. Median time to completion was 148 (interquartile range 117.5-184.3) seconds, and 95% (n=78) completed in <5 minutes. 93% (n=76) rated ease of completion as very easy. It is feasible to administer a screening tool to a cohort of ED patients on a tablet computer. The screener administration time is minimal and patient ease of use with this modality is high.
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Background: There is growing interest in clinical screening for pediatric social determinants of health, but little evidence on formats that maximize disclosure rates on a wide range of potentially sensitive topics. We designed a study to examine disclosure rates and hypothesized that there would be no difference in disclosure rates on face-to-face versus electronic screening formats for items other than highly sensitive items. Methods: We conducted a randomized trial of electronic versus face-to-face social screening formats in a pediatric emergency department. Consenting English-speaking and Spanish-speaking adult caregivers familiar with the presenting child's household were randomized to social screening via tablet computer (with option for audio assist) versus a face-to-face interview conducted by a fully bilingual/bicultural researcher. Results: Almost all caregivers (96.8%) reported at least 1 social need, but rates of reporting on the more sensitive issues (household violence and substance abuse) were significantly higher in electronic format, and disclosure was marginally higher in electronic format for financial insecurity and neighborhood and school safety. There was a significant difference in the proportion of social needs items with higher endorsement in the computer-based group (70%) than the face-to-face group (30%). Conclusions: Pediatric clinical sites interested in incorporating caregiver-reported socioeconomic, environmental, and behavioral needs screening should consider electronic screening when feasible, particularly when assessing sensitive topics such as child safety and household member substance use.
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Depression is a frequent yet overlooked occurrence in primary health care clinics worldwide. Depression and related health screening instruments are available but are rarely used consistently. The availability of technologically based instruments in the assessments offers novel approaches for gathering, storing, and assessing data that includes self-reported symptom severity from the patients themselves as well as clinician recorded information. In a suburban primary health care clinic in Quito, Ecuador, we tested the feasibility and utility of computer tablet-based assessments to evaluate clinic attendees for depression symptoms with the goal of developing effective screening and monitoring tools in the primary care clinics. We assessed individuals using the 9-item Patient Health Questionnaire, the Quick Inventory of Depressive Symptoms-Self-Report, the 12-item General Health Questionnaire, the Clinical Global Impression Severity, and a DSM-IV checklist of symptoms. We found that 20% of individuals had a PHQ9 of 8 or greater. There was good correlation between the symptom severity assessments. We conclude that the tablet-based PHQ9 is an excellent and efficient method of screening for depression in attendees at primary health care clinics and that one in five people should be assessed further for depressive illness and possible intervention.
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Although screening, brief intervention, and referral to treatment (SBIRT) is an evidence-based technique that, in some health-care settings, has been shown to cost-effectively reduce alcohol and drug use, research on the efficacy of SBIRT among criminal offender populations is limited. Such populations have a high prevalence of drug and alcohol use but limited access to intervention, and many are at risk for post-release relapse and recidivism. Thus, there exists a need for treatment options for drug-involved offenders of varying risk levels to reduce risky behaviors or enter treatment. This protocol describes an assessment of SBIRT feasibility and effectiveness in a criminal justice environment. Eight-hundred persons will be recruited from a large metropolitan jail, with the experimental group receiving an intervention depending on risk level and the control group receiving minimal intervention. The intervention will assess the risk level for drug and alcohol misuse by inmates, providing those at low or medium risk a brief intervention in the jail and referring those at high risk to community treatment following release. In addition, a brief treatment (eight-session) option will be available. Using data from a 12-month follow-up interview, the primary study outcomes are a reduction in drug and alcohol use, while secondary outcomes include participation in treatment, rearrest, quality of life, reduction in HIV risk behaviors, and costs of SBIRT. Individual reductions in alcohol and drug use can have significant effects on public health and safety when observed over a large population at risk for substance-use problems. With wider dissemination statewide or nationwide, a relatively low-cost intervention such as SBIRT could offer demonstrated benefits in this population. Clinical Trials Government Identifier, NCT01683643.
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Patients with low socioeconomic status (SES) use more acute hospital care and less primary care than patients with high socioeconomic status. This low-value pattern of care use is harmful to these patients' health and costly to the health care system. Many current policy initiatives, such as the creation of accountable care organizations, aim to improve both health outcomes and the cost-effectiveness of health services. Achieving those goals requires understanding what drives low-value health care use. We conducted qualitative interviews with forty urban low-SES patients to explore why they prefer to use hospital care. They perceive it as less expensive, more accessible, and of higher quality than ambulatory care. Efforts that focus solely on improving the quality of hospital care to reduce readmissions could, paradoxically, increase hospital use. Two different profile types emerged from our research. Patients in Profile A (five or more acute care episodes in six months) reported social dysfunction and disability. Those in Profile B (fewer than five acute care episodes in six months) reported social stability but found accessing ambulatory care to be difficult. Interventions to improve outcomes and values need to take these differences into account.
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Examines the research on theory, research and applied issues related to children exposed to violence and analyzes the complex interactions that determine children's outcomes. Among the questions the book addresses are the following: Why are some children greatly affected by marital violence, whereas others function quite well under the circumstances? What features of the hostile environment are the children reacting to, and what characteristics of the children and their parents mediate or exacerbate behavior problems? Why is there such variability in children's outcomes, and what can be done to help them? Part I focuses on theoretical and conceptual issues that have been neglected by much of the previous research in this field. Part II presents research reports, each of which provides one or more methodological innovations for better understanding children's responses to marital violence. Part III focuses on some of the research implications for social policy and intervention with this population of children. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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To develop a brief screen to identify families at risk for food insecurity (FI) and to evaluate the sensitivity, specificity, and convergent validity of the screen. Caregivers of children (age: birth through 3 years) from 7 urban medical centers completed the US Department of Agriculture 18-item Household Food Security Survey (HFSS), reports of child health, hospitalizations in their lifetime, and developmental risk. Children were weighed and measured. An FI screen was developed on the basis of affirmative HFSS responses among food-insecure families. Sensitivity and specificity were evaluated. Convergent validity (the correspondence between the FI screen and theoretically related variables) was assessed with logistic regression, adjusted for covariates including study site; the caregivers' race/ethnicity, US-born versus immigrant status, marital status, education, and employment; history of breastfeeding; child's gender; and the child's low birth weight status. The sample included 30,098 families, 23% of which were food insecure. HFSS questions 1 and 2 were most frequently endorsed among food-insecure families (92.5% and 81.9%, respectively). An affirmative response to either question 1 or 2 had a sensitivity of 97% and specificity of 83% and was associated with increased risk of reported poor/fair child health (adjusted odds ratio [aOR]: 1.56; P < .001), hospitalizations in their lifetime (aOR: 1.17; P < .001), and developmental risk (aOR: 1.60; P < .001). A 2-item FI screen was sensitive, specific, and valid among low-income families with young children. The FI screen rapidly identifies households at risk for FI, enabling providers to target services that ameliorate the health and developmental consequences associated with FI.
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To examine the validity of the Patient Health Questionnaire 2 (PHQ-2), a 2-item depression-screening scale, among adolescents. After completing a brief depression screen, 499 youth (aged 13-17 years) who were enrolled in an integrated health care system were invited to participate in a full assessment, including a longer depression-screening scale (Patient Health Questionnaire 9-item depression screen) and a structured mental health interview (Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Children). Eighty-nine percent (n = 444) completed the assessment. Criterion validity and construct validity were tested by examining associations between the PHQ-2 and other measures of depression and functional impairment. A PHQ-2 score of > or =3 had a sensitivity of 74% and specificity of 75% for detecting youth who met Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition, criteria for major depression on the Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Children and a sensitivity of 96% and specificity of 82% for detecting youth who met criteria for probable major depression on the Patient Health Questionnaire 9-item depression screen. On receiver operating characteristic analysis, the PHQ-2 had an area under the curve of 0.84 (95% confidence interval: 0.75-0.92), and a cut point of 3 was optimal for maximizing sensitivity without loss of specificity for detecting major depression. Youth with a PHQ-2 score of > or =3 had significantly higher functional-impairment scores and significantly higher scores for parent-reported internalizing problems than youth with scores of <3. The PHQ-2 has good sensitivity and specificity for detecting major depression. These properties, coupled with the brief nature of the instrument, make this tool promising as a first step for screening for adolescent depression in primary care.
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Strong relationships between exposure to childhood traumatic stressors and smoking behaviours inspire the question whether these adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) are associated with an increased risk of lung cancer during adulthood. Baseline survey data on health behaviours, health status and exposure to adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) were collected from 17,337 adults during 1995-1997. ACEs included abuse (emotional, physical, sexual), witnessing domestic violence, parental separation or divorce, or growing up in a household where members with mentally ill, substance abusers, or sent to prison. We used the ACE score (an integer count of the 8 categories of ACEs) as a measure of cumulative exposure to traumatic stress during childhood. Two methods of case ascertainment were used to identify incident lung cancer through 2005 follow-up: 1) hospital discharge records and 2) mortality records obtained from the National Death Index. The ACE score showed a graded relationship to smoking behaviors. We identified 64 cases of lung cancer through hospital discharge records (age-standardized risk = 201 x 100,000(-1) population) and 111 cases of lung cancer through mortality records (age-standardized mortality rate = 31.1 x 100,000(-1) person-years). The ACE score also showed a graded relationship to the incidence of lung cancer for cases identified through hospital discharge (P = 0.0004), mortality (P = 0.025), and both methods combined (P = 0.001). Compared to persons without ACEs, the risk of lung cancer for those with >or= 6 ACEs was increased approximately 3-fold (hospital records: RR = 3.18, 95%CI = 0.71-14.15; mortality records: RR = 3.55, 95%CI = 1.25-10.09; hospital or mortality records: RR = 2.70, 95%CI = 0.94-7.72). After a priori consideration of a causal pathway (i.e., ACEs --> smoking --> lung cancer), risk ratios were attenuated toward the null, although not completely. For lung cancer identified through hospital or mortality records, persons with >or= 6 ACEs were roughly 13 years younger on average at presentation than those without ACEs. Adverse childhood experiences may be associated with an increased risk of lung cancer, particularly premature death from lung cancer. The increase in risk may only be partly explained by smoking suggesting other possible mechanisms by which ACEs may contribute to the occurrence of lung cancer.
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There have been many randomized controlled trials of screening and brief alcohol intervention in primary care. Most trials have reported positive effects of brief intervention, in terms of reduced alcohol consumption in excessive drinkers. Despite this considerable evidence-base, key questions remain unanswered including: the applicability of the evidence to routine practice; the most efficient strategy for screening patients; and the required intensity of brief intervention in primary care. This pragmatic factorial trial, with cluster randomization of practices, will evaluate the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of different models of screening to identify hazardous and harmful drinkers in primary care and different intensities of brief intervention to reduce excessive drinking in primary care patients. GPs and nurses from 24 practices across the North East (n=12), London and South East (n=12) of England will be recruited. Practices will be randomly allocated to one of three intervention conditions: a leaflet-only control group (n=8); brief structured advice (n=8); and brief lifestyle counselling (n=8). To test the relative effectiveness of different screening methods all practices will also be randomised to either a universal or targeted screening approach and to use either a modified single item (M-SASQ) or FAST screening tool. Screening randomisation will incorporate stratification by geographical area and intervention condition. During the intervention stage of the trial, practices in each of the three arms will recruit at least 31 hazardous or harmful drinkers who will receive a short baseline assessment followed by brief intervention. Thus there will be a minimum of 744 patients recruited into the trial. The trial will evaluate the impact of screening and brief alcohol intervention in routine practice; thus its findings will be highly relevant to clinicians working in primary care in the UK. There will be an intention to treat analysis of study outcomes at 6 and 12 months after intervention. Analyses will include patient measures (screening result, weekly alcohol consumption, alcohol-related problems, public service use and quality of life) and implementation measures from practice staff (the acceptability and feasibility of different models of brief intervention.) We will also examine organisational factors associated with successful implementation. Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN06145674.
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Synopsis Synopsis The CAGE questionnaire was used to screen for at risk drinking among attenders to an inner London health centre. The CAGE functioned most effectively at a cut-off point of two or more affirmative replies, with a sensitivity of 84%, a specificity of 95% and a positive predictive value of 45%. The usefulness of this instrument for screening in general practice is discussed.
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Childhood abuse and other adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) have historically been studied individually, and relatively little is known about the co-occurrence of these events. The purpose of this study is to examine the degree to which ACEs co-occur as well as the nature of their co-occurrence. We used data from 8,629 adult members of a health plan who completed a survey about 10 ACEs which included: childhood abuse (emotional, physical, and sexual), neglect (emotional and physical), witnessing domestic violence, parental marital discord, and living with substance abusing, mentally ill, or criminal household members. The bivariate relationship between each of these 10 ACEs was assessed, and multivariate linear regression models were used to describe the interrelatedness of ACEs after adjusting for demographic factors. Two-thirds of participants reported at least one ACE; 81%-98% of respondents who had experienced one ACE reported at least one additional ACE (median: 87%). The presence of one ACE significantly increased the prevalence of having additional ACEs, elevating the adjusted odds by 2 to 17.7 times (median: 2.8). The observed number of respondents with high ACE scores was notably higher than the expected number under the assumption of independence of ACEs (p <.0001), confirming the statistical interrelatedness of ACEs. The study provides strong evidence that ACEs are interrelated rather than occurring independently. Therefore, collecting information about exposure to other ACEs is advisable for studies that focus on the consequences of a specific ACE. Assessment of multiple ACEs allows for the potential assessment of a graded relationship between these childhood exposures and health and social outcomes.
Chapter
The sd-shell effective-interaction matrix elements are derived from the Paris and Reid potentials using a microscopic folded-diagram effective-interaction theory. A comparison of these matrix elements is carried out by calculating spectra and energy centroids for nuclei of mass 18 to 24. The folded diagrams were included by both solving for the energy-dependent effective interaction self-consistently and by including the folded diagrams explicitly. In the latter case the folded diagrams were grouped either according to the number of folds or as prescribed by the Lee and Suzuki iteration technique; the Lee-Suzuki method was found to converge better and yield the more reliable results. Special attention was given to the proper treatment of one.body connected diagrams in the calculation of the two-body effective interaction. We first calculate the (energy-dependent) G-matrix appropriate for thNd-shell for both potentials using a momentum-space matrix-inversion method which treats the Pauli exclusion operator essentially exactly. This G-matrix interaction is then used to calculate the irreducible and nonfolded diagrams contained in the Q-box. The effective-interaction matrix elements are obtained by evaluating a Q-box folded diagram series. We considered four approximations for the basic Q-box. These were (CI) the inclusion of diagrams up to 2nd order in G, (C2) 2nd order plus hole-hole phonons, (C3) 2nd order plus (bare TDA) particle-hole phonons, and (C4) 2nd order plus both hole-hole and particle-hole phonons. The contribution of the folded diagrams was found to be quite large, typically about 30%, and to weaken the interaction. Also, due to the greater energy dependence of higher-order diagrams, the effect of folded diagrams was much greater in higher orders. That is, the contribution from higher-order diagrams for most cases was greatly reduced by the folded diagrams. The convergence of the folded-diagram series deteriorates with the inclusion of higher-order Q -box processes in the method which groups diagrams by the number of folds, but remains excellent in the Lee-Suzuki method. Whereas the inclusion of the particle-hole phonon was essential to obtain agreement with experiment in earlier work, when the folded diagrams are included the effect of the particle-hole phonon is to reduce the amount of binding. All four approximations to both potentials produce interactions which badly underbind nuclei. The excitation spectra given by these interactions are, however, all rather similar to each other. The Paris interaction produces more binding than does the Reid, but differences between results obtained with the two interactions. were often less than differences obtained in the four approximations. Essentially no difference was found between the effective non-central interactions from the Reid and Paris potentials after including the folded diagrams, although these two potentials themselves are quite different, especially in the strength of the tensor force. Comparisons between. calculated spectra and experiment were done for 18O, 18F, 19F, 20O, 20Ne, 22Ne, 22Na and 24Mg.
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Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) include verbal, physical, or sexual abuse, as well as family dysfunction (e.g., an incarcerated, mentally ill, or substance-abusing family member; domestic violence; or absence of a parent because of divorce or separation). ACEs have been linked to a range of adverse health outcomes in adulthood, including substance abuse, depression, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, and premature mortality. Furthermore, data collected from a large sample of health maintenance organization members indicated that a history of ACEs is common among adults and ACEs are themselves interrelated. To examine whether a history of ACEs was common in a randomly selected population, CDC analyzed information from 26,229 adults in five states using the 2009 ACE module of the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS). This report describes the results of that analysis, which indicated that, overall, 59.4% of respondents reported having at least one ACE, and 8.7% reported five or more ACEs. The high prevalence of ACEs underscores the need for 1) additional efforts at the state and local level to reduce and prevent child maltreatment and associated family dysfunction and 2) further development and dissemination of trauma-focused services to treat stress-related health outcomes associated with ACEs.
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Importance Early intervention for substance use is critical to improving adolescent outcomes. Studies have found promising results for Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT), but little research has examined implementation.Objective To compare SBIRT implementation in pediatric primary care among trained pediatricians, pediatricians working in coordination with embedded behavioral health care practitioners (BHCPs), and usual care (UC).Design, Setting, and Participants The study is a 2-year (November 1, 2011, through October 31, 2013), nonblinded, cluster randomized, hybrid implementation and effectiveness trial examining SBIRT implementation outcomes across 2 modalities of implementation and UC. Fifty-two pediatricians from a large general pediatrics clinic in an integrated health care system were randomized to 1 of 3 SBIRT implementation arms; patients aged 12 to 18 years were eligible. Interventions Two modes of SBIRT implementation, (1) pediatrician only (pediatricians trained to provide SBIRT) and (2) embedded BHCP (BHCP trained to provide SBIRT), and (3) UC.Main Outcomes and Measures Implementation of SBIRT (primary outcome), which included assessments, brief interventions, and referrals to specialty substance use and mental health treatment.Results The final sample included 1871 eligible patients among 47 pediatricians; health care professional characteristics did not differ across study arms. Patients in the pediatrician-only (adjusted odds ratio [AOR], 10.37; 95% CI, 5.45-19.74; P < .001) and the embedded BHCP (AOR, 18.09; 95% CI, 9.69-33.77; P < .001) arms had higher odds of receiving brief interventions compared with patients in the UC arm. Patients in the embedded BHCP arm were more likely to receive brief interventions compared with those in the pediatrician-only arm (AOR, 1.74; 95% CI, 1.31-2.31; P < .001). The embedded BHCP arm had lower odds of receiving a referral compared with the pediatrician-only (AOR, 0.58; 95% CI, 0.43-0.78; P < .001) and UC (AOR, 0.65; 95% CI, 0.48-0.89; P = .006) arms; odds of referrals did not differ between the pediatrician-only and UC arms.Conclusions and Relevance The intervention arms had better screening, assessment, and brief intervention rates than the UC arm. Patients in the pediatrician-only and UC arms had higher odds of being referred to specialty treatment than those in the embedded BHCP arm, suggesting lingering barriers to having pediatricians fully address substance use in primary care. Findings also highlight age and ethnic groups less likely to receive these important services.Trial Registration Clinicaltrials.gov Identifier: NCT02408952
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Compliance with pathways for hospitalised patients with alcohol dependency syndrome is often poor. A pathway for recognition and treatment of alcohol dependency was redesigned as part of a 12 month service improvement project in the acute medical unit using plan, do, study, act (PDSA) cycles. A needs assessment was undertaken: Audit data from 2013 showed over-prescription of chlordiazepoxide for detoxification treatment (DT) leading to prolonged hospital admissions with an average length of stay of 5.5 days in 2012/2013. Acceptability of screening tools was tested: Common screening tools (CEWA, AUDIT) were rejected by junior doctors due to the high number of questions as too cumbersome for routine practice. Compliance with usage in random samples over a three month period was persistently (n=10%. Testing of an abbreviated AUDIT questionnaire with only two questions and a specified threshold showed a AUROC of 1 (p<0.001 for correct identification). The screening tool was implemented in several PDSAs cycles. After the final cycle a random sample of 100 patients was reviewed for pathway compliance over a three months period. Eighty-six patients were screened with the two-question tool of these 18 were identified as possible risk. Of these 16 patients had the full AUDIT questionnaire, only eight with elevated values were started on DT. Overall compliance with the pathway increased to 84%.
Article
lems have their origins early in life. 1 The timing, intensity, and cumulative burden of adversities, especially in the relative absence of protective factors, can affect gene expression, the conditioning of stress responses, and the development of immune system function. Individuals affected by a high burden of adverse experiences may adopt compensatory high-risk behaviors that can further erode their health and mental health. Not all adversity occurs in childhood(eg,military combat),but a highburden of cumulative intrafamilial (child maltreatment, domestic violence, impaired caregiving) and other adversities (income and food insecurity) in childhood can have profound lifelong effects unless mitigated by protective factors within the family or the community, or through specific interventions. Two of the articles in this issue indicate that the impact of intrafamilial adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) on health and mental health begin to manifest in childhood. Kerker et al 2 used the nationally representative longitudinal National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being study toassessthe ACEscoresofchildrenunder theageof6years who remained at home after child protective investigation and found they were similar to those of children who were removed and placed in foster/kinship care. The authors also reported that higher ACE scores in this population were associated with more mental health (Child Behavior Checklist score >64) and chronic medical problems, and, for preschool children, lower social scores. Earlier studies of children informally placed with kinship caregivers after child welfare investigation showed a high prevalence of health problems, although fewer mental health problems, compared to children in nonrelative foster care, indicating that almost all children involved with child welfare are at high risk for poor outcomes that may be rooted in cumulative childhood trauma. 3 In a second article in this issue, Thompson et al 4 used LONGSCAN longitudinal data to
Article
Current knowledge of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) relies on data predominantly collected from white, middle- / upper-middle-class participants and focuses on experiences within the home. Using a more socioeconomically and racially diverse urban population, Conventional and Expanded (community-level) ACEs were measured to help understand whether Conventional ACEs alone can sufficiently measure adversity, particularly among various subgroups. Participants from a previous large, representative, community-based health survey in Southeast Pennsylvania who were aged ≥18 years were contacted between November 2012 and January 2013 to complete another phone survey measuring ACEs. Ordinal logistic regression models were used to test associations between Conventional and Expanded ACEs scores and demographic characteristics. Analysis was conducted in 2013 and 2014. Of 1,784 respondents, 72.9% had at least one Conventional ACE, 63.4% at least one Expanded ACE, and 49.3% experienced both. A total of 13.9% experienced only Expanded ACEs and would have gone unrecognized if only Conventional ACEs were assessed. Certain demographic characteristics were associated with higher risk for Conventional ACEs but were not predictive of Expanded ACEs, and vice versa. Few adversities were associated with both Conventional and Expanded ACEs. To more accurately represent the level of adversity experienced across various sociodemographic groups, these data support extending the Conventional ACEs measure. Copyright © 2015 American Journal of Preventive Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Article
Objective: The purpose of the current investigation is to assess and validate the factor structure of the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System's (BRFSS) Adverse Childhood Experience (ACE) module. Method: ACE data available from the 2009 BRFSS survey were fit using exploratory factor analysis (EFA) to estimate an initial factorial structure. The exploratory solution was then validated using confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) with data from the 2010 BRFSS survey. Lastly, ACE factors were tested for measurement invariance using multiple group factor analysis. Results: EFA results suggested that a 3-factor solution adequately fit the data. Examination of factor loadings and item content suggested the factors represented the following construct areas: Household Dysfunction, Emotional/Physical Abuse, and Sexual Abuse. Subsequent CFA results confirmed the 3-factor solution and provided preliminary support for estimation of an overall latent ACE score summarizing the responses to all available items. Measurement invariance was supported across both gender and age. Conclusions: Results of this study provides support for the use of the current ACE module scoring algorithm, which uses the sum of the number of items endorsed to estimate exposure. However, the results also suggest potential benefits to estimating 3 separate composite scores to estimate the specific effects of exposure to Household Dysfunction, Emotional/Physical Abuse, and Sexual Abuse.
Article
Trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy (TF-CBT) is a family-focused treatment in which parents or caregivers participate equally with their traumatized child or adolescent. TF-CBT is a components-based and phase-based treatment that emphasizes proportionality and incorporates gradual exposure into each component. Child and parent receive all TF-CBT components in parallel individual sessions that enhance skills to help the child recognize and regulate trauma responses, express thoughts and feelings about the child's trauma experiences and master avoidance of trauma memories and reminders. Parental participation significantly enhances the beneficial impact of TF-CBT for traumatized children. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Article
The literature has been contradictory regarding whether parents who were abused as children have a greater tendency to abuse their own children. A prospective 30-year follow-up study interviewed individuals with documented histories of childhood abuse and neglect and matched comparisons and a subset of their children. The study assessed maltreatment based on child protective service (CPS) agency records and reports by parents, nonparents, and offspring. The extent of the intergenerational transmission of abuse and neglect depended in large part on the source of the information used. Individuals with histories of childhood abuse and neglect have higher rates of being reported to CPS for child maltreatment but do not self-report more physical and sexual abuse than matched comparisons. Offspring of parents with histories of childhood abuse and neglect are more likely to report sexual abuse and neglect and that CPS was concerned about them at some point in their lives. The strongest evidence for the intergenerational transmission of maltreatment indicates that offspring are at risk for childhood neglect and sexual abuse, but detection or surveillance bias may account for the greater likelihood of CPS reports. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Article
Context Suicide is a leading cause of death in the United States, but identifying persons at risk is difficult. Thus, the US surgeon general has made suicide prevention a national priority. An expanding body of research suggests that childhood trauma and adverse experiences can lead to a variety of negative health outcomes, including attempted suicide among adolescents and adults.Objective To examine the relationship between the risk of suicide attempts and adverse childhood experiences and the number of such experiences (adverse childhood experiences [ACE] score).Design, Setting, and Participants A retrospective cohort study of 17 337 adult health maintenance organization members (54% female; mean [SD] age, 57 [15.3] years) who attended a primary care clinic in San Diego, Calif, within a 3-year period (1995-1997) and completed a survey about childhood abuse and household dysfunction, suicide attempts (including age at first attempt), and multiple other health-related issues.Main Outcome Measure Self-reported suicide attempts, compared by number of adverse childhood experiences, including emotional, physical, and sexual abuse; household substance abuse, mental illness, and incarceration; and parental domestic violence, separation, or divorce.Results The lifetime prevalence of having at least 1 suicide attempt was 3.8%. Adverse childhood experiences in any category increased the risk of attempted suicide 2- to 5-fold. The ACE score had a strong, graded relationship to attempted suicide during childhood/adolescence and adulthood (P<.001). Compared with persons with no such experiences (prevalence of attempted suicide, 1.1%), the adjusted odds ratio of ever attempting suicide among persons with 7 or more experiences (35.2%) was 31.1 (95% confidence interval, 20.6-47.1). Adjustment for illicit drug use, depressed affect, and self-reported alcoholism reduced the strength of the relationship between the ACE score and suicide attempts, suggesting partial mediation of the adverse childhood experience–suicide attempt relationship by these factors. The population-attributable risk fractions for 1 or more experiences were 67%, 64%, and 80% for lifetime, adult, and childhood/adolescent suicide attempts, respectively.Conclusions A powerful graded relationship exists between adverse childhood experiences and risk of attempted suicide throughout the life span. Alcoholism, depressed affect, and illicit drug use, which are strongly associated with such experiences, appear to partially mediate this relationship. Because estimates of the attributable risk fraction caused by these experiences were large, prevention of these experiences and the treatment of persons affected by them may lead to progress in suicide prevention.
Article
Objective. —Project TrEAT (Trial for Early Alcohol Treatment) was designed to test the efficacy of brief physician advice in reducing alcohol use and health care utilization in problem drinkers.Design. —Randomized controlled clinical trial with 12-month follow-up.Setting. —A total of 17 community-based primary care practices (64 physicians) located in 10 Wisconsin counties.Participants. —Of the 17 695 patients screened for problem drinking, 482 men and 292 women met inclusion criteria and were randomized into a control (n=382) or an experimental (n=392) group. A total of 723 subjects (93%) participated in the 12-month follow-up procedures.Intervention. —The intervention consisted of two 10- to 15-minute counseling visits delivered by physicians using a scripted workbook that included advice, education, and contracting information.Main Outcome Measures. —Alcohol use measures, emergency department visits, and hospital days.Results. —There were no significant differences between groups at baseline on alcohol use, age, socioeconomic status, smoking status, rates of depression or anxiety, frequency of conduct disorders, lifetime drug use, or health care utilization. At the time of the 12-month follow-up, there were significant reductions in 7-day alcohol use (mean number of drinks in previous 7 days decreased from 19.1 at baseline to 11.5 at 12 months for the experimental group vs 18.9 at baseline to 15.5 at 12 months for controls; t=4.33; P<.001), episodes of binge drinking (mean number of binge drinking episodes during previous 30 days decreased from 5.7 at baseline to 3.1 at 12 months for the experimental group vs 5.3 at baseline to 4.2 at 12 months for controls; t=2.81; P<.001), and frequency of excessive drinking (percentage drinking excessively in previous 7 days decreased from 47.5% at baseline to 17.8% at 12 months for the experimental group vs 48.1% at baseline to 32.5% at 12 months for controls; t=4.53; P<.001). The ϰ2 test of independence revealed a significant relationship between group status and length of hospitalization over the study period for men (P<.01).Conclusions. —This study provides the first direct evidence that physician intervention with problem drinkers decreases alcohol use and health resource utilization in the US health care system.
Article
Background Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), including child abuse and family dysfunction, are linked to leading causes of adult morbidity and mortality. Most prior ACE studies were based on a nonrepresentative patient sample from one Southern California HMO. Purpose To determine if ACE exposure increases the risk of chronic disease and disability using a larger, more representative sample of adults than prior studies. Methods Ten states and the District of Columbia included an optional ACE module in the 2010 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance Survey, a national cross-sectional, random-digit-dial telephone survey of adults. Analysis was conducted in November 2012. Respondents were asked about nine ACEs, including physical, sexual, and emotional abuse and household member mental illness, alcoholism, drug abuse, imprisonment, divorce, and intimate partner violence. An ACE score was calculated for each subject by summing the endorsed ACE items. After controlling for sociodemographic variables, weighted AORs were calculated for self-reported health conditions given exposure to zero, one to three, four to six, or seven to nine ACEs. Results Compared to those who reported no ACE exposure, the adjusted odds of reporting myocardial infarction, asthma, fair/poor health, frequent mental distress, and disability were higher for those reporting one to three, four to six, or seven to nine ACEs. Odds of reporting coronary heart disease and stroke were higher for those who reported four to six and seven to nine ACEs; odds of diabetes were higher for those reporting one to three and four to six ACEs. Conclusions These findings underscore the importance of child maltreatment prevention as a means to mitigate adult morbidity and mortality.
Article
Background: Despite the advantages of using high schools for conducting school-based Screening, Brief Intervention, and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) programs for adolescent substance misuse, there have been very few studies of Brief Interventions (BIs) in these settings. Objectives: This multi-site, repeated measures study examined outcomes of adolescents who received SBIRT services and compared the extent of change in substance use based on the intensity of intervention received. Methods: Participants consisted of 629 adolescents, ages 14-17, who received SBIRT services across 13 participating high schools in New Mexico. The level of service received and number of sessions were collected through administrative records, while the number of self-reported days in the past month of drinking; drinking to intoxication; and drug use were gathered at baseline and 6-month follow-up. Results: BI was provided to 85.1% of adolescents, while 14.9% received brief treatment or referral to treatment (BT/RT). Participants receiving any intervention reported significant reductions in frequency of drinking to intoxication (p < .05) and drug use (p < .001), but not alcohol use, from baseline to 6-month follow-up. The magnitude of these reductions did not differ based on service variables. Controlling for baseline frequency of use, a BT/RT service level was associated with more days of drinking at 6-month follow-up (p < .05), but was no longer significant when controlling for number of service sessions received. Conclusions and scientific significance: These findings support school-based SBIRT for adolescents, but more research is needed on this promising approach.
Article
Background and objective: Current assessments of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) may not adequately encompass the breadth of adversity to which low-income urban children are exposed. The purpose of this study was to identify and characterize the range of adverse childhood experiences faced by young adults who grew up in a low-income urban area. Methods: Focus groups were conducted with young adults who grew up in low-income Philadelphia neighborhoods. Using the nominal group technique, participants generated a list of adverse childhood experiences and then identified the 5 most stressful experiences on the group list. The most stressful experiences identified by participants were grouped into a ranked list of domains and subdomains. Results: Participants identified a range of experiences, grouped into 10 domains: family relationships, community stressors, personal victimization, economic hardship, peer relationships, discrimination, school, health, child welfare/juvenile justice, and media/technology. Included in these domains were many but not all of the experiences from the initial ACEs studies; parental divorce/separation and mental illness were absent. Additional experiences not included in the initial ACEs but endorsed by our participants included single-parent homes; exposure to violence, adult themes, and criminal behavior; personal victimization; bullying; economic hardship; and discrimination. Conclusions: Gathering youth perspectives on childhood adversity broadens our understanding of the experience of stress and trauma in childhood. Future work is needed to determine the significance of this broader set of adverse experiences in predisposing children to poor health outcomes as adults.
Article
Home visiting is an important mechanism for minimizing the lifelong effects of early childhood adversity. To do so, it must be informed by the biology of early brain and child development. Advances in neuroscience, epigenetics, and the physiology of stress are revealing the biological mechanisms underlying well-established associations between early childhood adversity and suboptimal life-course trajectories. Left unchecked, mediators of physiologic stress become toxic, alter both genome and brain, and lead to a vicious cycle of chronic stress. This so-called "toxic stress" results a wide array of behavioral attempts to blunt the stress response, a process known as "behavioral allostasis." Although behaviors like smoking, overeating, promiscuity, and substance abuse decrease stress transiently, over time they become maladaptive and result in the unhealthy lifestyles and noncommunicable diseases that are the leading causes of morbidity and mortality. The biology of toxic stress and the concept of behavioral allostasis shed new light on the developmental origins of lifelong disease and highlight opportunities for early intervention and prevention. Future efforts to minimize the effects of childhood adversity should focus on expanding the capacity of caregivers and communities to promote (1) the safe, stable, and nurturing relationships that buffer toxic stress, and (2) the rudimentary but foundational social-emotional, language, and cognitive skills needed to develop healthy, adaptive coping skills. Building these critical caregiver and community capacities will require a public health approach with unprecedented levels of collaboration and coordination between the healthcare, childcare, early education, early intervention, and home visiting sectors.
Article
The empirical literature on the longer-term adjustment of children of divorce is reviewed from the perspective of (a) the stressors and elevated risks that divorce presents for children and (b) protective factors associated with better adjustment. The resiliency demonstrated by the majority of children is discussed, as are controversies regarding the adjustment of adult children of divorce. A third dimension of children's responses to divorce, that of lingering painful memories, is distinguished from pathology in order to add a useful complement to risk and resilience perspectives. The potential benefits of using an increasingly differentiated body of divorce research to shape the content of interventions, such as divorce education, by designing programs that focus on known risk factors for children and that assist parents to institute more protective behaviors that may enhance children's longer-term adjustment is discussed.
Article
Compared to screening for partner violence, screening for childhood physical and sexual abuse among adult patients has received little attention, despite associated adverse health consequences. The objective of this exploratory study was to describe the practices, skills, attitudes, and perceived barriers of a large sample of family physicians in screening adult patients for childhood sexual or physical abuse. Surveys were mailed to the 833 members of the Massachusetts Academy of Family Physicians in 2007 eliciting information about screening practices. Factors associated with routine or targeted screening among adult primary care patients were evaluated. Less than one-third of providers reported usually or always screening for childhood trauma and correctly estimated childhood abuse prevalence rates; 25% of providers reported that they rarely or never screen patients. Confidence in screening, perceived role, and knowledge of trauma prevalence were associated with routine and targeted screening. Women and physicians reporting fewer barriers were more likely to routinely screen adult patients. Despite the 20%-50% prevalence of child abuse exposure among adult primary care patients, screening for childhood abuse is not routine practice for most physicians surveyed; a large subgroup of physicians never screen patients. Study findings draw attention to a largely unexplored experience associated with considerable health care costs and morbidity. Results highlight the need to develop training programs about when to suspect trauma histories and how to approach adult patients.
Article
Objectives of this population-based study were: (1) to examine the relative contribution of childhood abuse and other adverse childhood experiences to poor adult health and increased health care utilization and (2) to examine the cumulative effects of adverse childhood experiences on adult health and health care utilization. Data from the Ontario Health Survey, a representative population sample (n=9,953) of respondents aged 15 years and older, were analyzed using logistic regression. Adverse childhood experiences examined were childhood physical and sexual abuse, parental marital conflict, poor parent-child relationship, low parental education and parental psychopathology. Most (72%) respondents reported at least one adverse childhood experience and a considerable proportion of respondents (37%) reported two or more of these experiences. In examining the bivariate models, childhood physical and sexual abuse had a stronger influence than other types of adverse childhood experiences. With the addition of other adverse childhood experiences in the model, the odds ratios for childhood abuse were attenuated but remained statistically significant for most health outcomes. This suggests that childhood abuse may have a unique adverse influence on the development of poor adult health. When an aggregate variable was created to explore the cumulative effects of adverse childhood experience, the odds were increased, with each additional experience, for reporting multiple health problems [odds ratio (OR): 1.22], poor self-rated health (OR: 1.18), pain (OR: 1.24), disability (OR: 1.24), general practitioner use (OR: 1.12), emergency room use (OR: 1.29) and health professional use (OR: 1.19). This study suggests that childhood abuse and other adverse childhood experiences are overlapping risk factors for long-term adult health problems and that the accumulation of these adverse experiences increases the risk of poor adult health. This study highlights the importance of the many adverse childhood experiences influencing long-term health. In practice, childhood abuse is often difficult to identify as families tend to keep it hidden and reported cases represent only a small percentage of the actual cases. Assessments and interventions which focus on improving socio-economic status, strengthening marital and parent-child relationships, and supporting parents with mental health issues are less threatening for families than assessing their experiences with abuse and neglect and are more likely to be effective in identifying and supporting at-risk families.
Article
To elucidate family physicians' motivations concerning early intervention for alcohol use and their perceived barriers to such intervention. Qualitative study with the use of focus groups and semistructured interviews. Community-based, fee-for-service family-medicine practices in London, Ont. Twelve focus-group participants recruited through telephone contact by two family physicians on the project team. Participants were required to be physicians in family practice in London. Twelve interview participants recruited through a grand-rounds presentation at two local hospitals. Participants were required to be physicians in a community-based family practice in which primary care was not delivered by residents and to have agreed to participate in all phases (e.g., needs assessment, training and evaluation) of a training program on interventions to help patients reduce alcohol consumption or quit smoking. Motivations concerning early intervention for alcohol use and perceived barriers to such intervention, as identified by physicians. Physicians in the focus groups and those interviewed endorsed their role in helping patients to reduce alcohol consumption and cited several reasons for the importance of that role. There was strong support for viewing alcohol use as a lifestyle issue to be dealt with in the context of a holistic approach to patient care. Participants cited many barriers to fulfilling their role and were particularly concerned about the appropriateness of asking all adolescent and adult patients about alcohol use, even at visits intended to discuss other issues and concerns. Physicians gave several motivations for improving their work in reduction of alcohol consumption, including their current frustration with the lack of a systematic strategy or tangible materials to help them identify and manage patients. Interventions with patients who use alcohol should be framed in the context of a holistic approach to family medicine. Qualitative knowledge of the motivations and barriers affecting physicians can inform future research and educational strategies in this area.
Article
Because a parental history of abuse during childhood is a documented risk factor for child abuse, pediatricians have been urged to assess parents' childhood discipline experiences. A brief set of questions was developed to detect a maternal history of childhood physical abuse that could be incorporated into a comprehensive psychosocial screening questionnaire. A criterion-based definition was used as the measure for physical abuse. In phase I, four screening questions were developed in a cross-sectional survey of 284 middle-class women attending a family medicine clinic, of whom 32% met the criteria definition for physical abuse. In phase II, the screening questions were tested in 428 mothers seen in Salt Lake City- and Seattle-area pediatric clinics. The four screening questions had a sensitivity of > 90%, a specificity of > 85%, a positive predictive value of > 75%, and a negative predictive value of > or = 90%--as compared with the criteria-based definition in both pediatric settings. These four screening questions compared favorably to a criteria-based definition of physical abuse during childhood and may be useful additions to psychosocial questionnaires.
Article
Project TrEAT (Trial for Early Alcohol Treatment) was designed to test the efficacy of brief physician advice in reducing alcohol use and health care utilization in problem drinkers. Randomized controlled clinical trial with 12-month follow-up. A total of 17 community-based primary care practices (64 physicians) located in 10 Wisconsin counties. Of the 17695 patients screened for problem drinking, 482 men and 292 women met inclusion criteria and were randomized into a control (n=382) or an experimental (n=392) group. A total of 723 subjects (93%) participated in the 12-month follow-up procedures. The intervention consisted of two 10- to 15-minute counseling visits delivered by physicians using a scripted workbook that included advice, education, and contracting information. Alcohol use measures, emergency department visits, and hospital days. There were no significant differences between groups at baseline on alcohol use, age, socioeconomic status, smoking status, rates of depression or anxiety, frequency of conduct disorders, lifetime drug use, or health care utilization. At the time of the 12-month follow-up, there were significant reductions in 7-day alcohol use (mean number of drinks in previous 7 days decreased from 19.1 at baseline to 11.5 at 12 months for the experimental group vs 18.9 at baseline to 15.5 at 12 months for controls; t=4.33; P<.001), episodes of binge drinking (mean number of binge drinking episodes during previous 30 days decreased from 5.7 at baseline to 3.1 at 12 months for the experimental group vs 5.3 at baseline to 4.2 at 12 months for controls; t=2.81; P<.001), and frequency of excessive drinking (percentage drinking excessively in previous 7 days decreased from 47.5% at baseline to 17.8% at 12 months for the experimental group vs 48.1% at baseline to 32.5% at 12 months for controls; t=4.53; P<.001). The chi2 test of independence revealed a significant relationship between group status and length of hospitalization over the study period for men (P<.01). This study provides the first direct evidence that physician intervention with problem drinkers decreases alcohol use and health resource utilization in the US health care system.
Article
The relationship of health risk behavior and disease in adulthood to the breadth of exposure to childhood emotional, physical, or sexual abuse, and household dysfunction during childhood has not previously been described. A questionnaire about adverse childhood experiences was mailed to 13,494 adults who had completed a standardized medical evaluation at a large HMO; 9,508 (70.5%) responded. Seven categories of adverse childhood experiences were studied: psychological, physical, or sexual abuse; violence against mother; or living with household members who were substance abusers, mentally ill or suicidal, or ever imprisoned. The number of categories of these adverse childhood experiences was then compared to measures of adult risk behavior, health status, and disease. Logistic regression was used to adjust for effects of demographic factors on the association between the cumulative number of categories of childhood exposures (range: 0-7) and risk factors for the leading causes of death in adult life. More than half of respondents reported at least one, and one-fourth reported > or = 2 categories of childhood exposures. We found a graded relationship between the number of categories of childhood exposure and each of the adult health risk behaviors and diseases that were studied (P < .001). Persons who had experienced four or more categories of childhood exposure, compared to those who had experienced none, had 4- to 12-fold increased health risks for alcoholism, drug abuse, depression, and suicide attempt; a 2- to 4-fold increase in smoking, poor self-rated health, > or = 50 sexual intercourse partners, and sexually transmitted disease; and 1.4- to 1.6-fold increase in physical inactivity and severe obesity. The number of categories of adverse childhood exposures showed a graded relationship to the presence of adult diseases including ischemic heart disease, cancer, chronic lung disease, skeletal fractures, and liver disease. The seven categories of adverse childhood experiences were strongly interrelated and persons with multiple categories of childhood exposure were likely to have multiple health risk factors later in life. We found a strong graded relationship between the breadth of exposure to abuse or household dysfunction during childhood and multiple risk factors for several of the leading causes of death in adults.
Article
Our purpose was to examine physicians' screening practices for female partner abuse during prenatal visits and to identify barriers to screening. A self-administered questionnaire was developed to collect data on physicians' screening practices and their beliefs about screening for female partner abuse. The survey was mailed to all primary care physicians practicing in Alaska. The response rate was 80% (305/383). These analyses were limited to physicians who indicated that they provided prenatal care (n = 157). More than one-half of respondents providing prenatal care estimated that 10% or more of their female patients had experienced abuse. Less than one-half of respondents had recent training on partner abuse. Only 17% of respondents routinely screened at the first prenatal visit and 5% at follow-up visits. Respondents were more likely to screen at the first prenatal visit compared to follow-up visits. Multivariate analyses failed to support any associations between physicians' characteristics and screening practices. Physicians' perception that abuse was prevalent among their patients and physicians' belief that they have a responsibility to deal with abuse were the only variables that were independently associated with screening at prenatal visits. Other barriers frequently cited in the literature were not predictive of screening. Most Alaskan physicians do not routinely screen for abuse during prenatal visits. Medical education should increase physicians' index of suspicion for abuse, emphasize physicians' responsibility to address partner abuse, and reinforce the importance of routine screening throughout the pregnancy. More research is needed to identify barriers to screening and strategies for integrating routine screening into prenatal care.
Article
Suicide is a leading cause of death in the United States, but identifying persons at risk is difficult. Thus, the US surgeon general has made suicide prevention a national priority. An expanding body of research suggests that childhood trauma and adverse experiences can lead to a variety of negative health outcomes, including attempted suicide among adolescents and adults. To examine the relationship between the risk of suicide attempts and adverse childhood experiences and the number of such experiences (adverse childhood experiences [ACE] score). A retrospective cohort study of 17 337 adult health maintenance organization members (54% female; mean [SD] age, 57 [15.3] years) who attended a primary care clinic in San Diego, Calif, within a 3-year period (1995-1997) and completed a survey about childhood abuse and household dysfunction, suicide attempts (including age at first attempt), and multiple other health-related issues. Self-reported suicide attempts, compared by number of adverse childhood experiences, including emotional, physical, and sexual abuse; household substance abuse, mental illness, and incarceration; and parental domestic violence, separation, or divorce. The lifetime prevalence of having at least 1 suicide attempt was 3.8%. Adverse childhood experiences in any category increased the risk of attempted suicide 2- to 5-fold. The ACE score had a strong, graded relationship to attempted suicide during childhood/adolescence and adulthood (P<.001). Compared with persons with no such experiences (prevalence of attempted suicide, 1.1%), the adjusted odds ratio of ever attempting suicide among persons with 7 or more experiences (35.2%) was 31.1 (95% confidence interval, 20.6-47.1). Adjustment for illicit drug use, depressed affect, and self-reported alcoholism reduced the strength of the relationship between the ACE score and suicide attempts, suggesting partial mediation of the adverse childhood experience-suicide attempt relationship by these factors. The population-attributable risk fractions for 1 or more experiences were 67%, 64%, and 80% for lifetime, adult, and childhood/adolescent suicide attempts, respectively. A powerful graded relationship exists between adverse childhood experiences and risk of attempted suicide throughout the life span. Alcoholism, depressed affect, and illicit drug use, which are strongly associated with such experiences, appear to partially mediate this relationship. Because estimates of the attributable risk fraction caused by these experiences were large, prevention of these experiences and the treatment of persons affected by them may lead to progress in suicide prevention.
Article
A number of self-administered questionnaires are available for assessing depression severity, including the 9-item Patient Health Questionnaire depression module (PHQ-9). Because even briefer measures might be desirable for use in busy clinical settings or as part of comprehensive health questionnaires, we evaluated a 2-item version of the PHQ depression module, the PHQ-2. The PHQ-2 inquires about the frequency of depressed mood and anhedonia over the past 2 weeks, scoring each as 0 ("not at all") to 3 ("nearly every day"). The PHQ-2 was completed by 6000 patients in 8 primary care clinics and 7 obstetrics-gynecology clinics. Construct validity was assessed using the 20-item Short-Form General Health Survey, self-reported sick days and clinic visits, and symptom-related difficulty. Criterion validity was assessed against an independent structured mental health professional (MHP) interview in a sample of 580 patients. As PHQ-2 depression severity increased from 0 to 6, there was a substantial decrease in functional status on all 6 SF-20 subscales. Also, symptom-related difficulty, sick days, and healthcare utilization increased. Using the MHP reinterview as the criterion standard, a PHQ-2 score > or =3 had a sensitivity of 83% and a specificity of 92% for major depression. Likelihood ratio and receiver operator characteristic analysis identified a PHQ-2 score of 3 as the optimal cutpoint for screening purposes. Results were similar in the primary care and obstetrics-gynecology samples. The construct and criterion validity of the PHQ-2 make it an attractive measure for depression screening.
Article
This study examines the unique contribution of five types of maltreatment (sexual abuse, physical abuse, emotional abuse, physical neglect, emotional neglect) to adult health behaviors as well as the additive impact of exposure to different types of childhood maltreatment. Two hundred and twenty-one women recruited from a VA primary care clinic completed questionnaires assessing exposure to childhood trauma and adult health behaviors. Regression models were used to test the relationship between childhood maltreatment and adult health behaviors. Sexual and physical abuse appear to predict a number of adverse outcomes; when other types of maltreatment are controlled, however, sexual abuse and physical abuse do not predict as many poor outcomes. In addition, sexual, physical, and emotional abuse and emotional neglect in childhood were all related to different adult health behaviors. The more types of childhood maltreatment participants were exposed to the more likely they were to have problems with substance use and risky sexual behaviors in adulthood. The results indicate that it is important to assess a broad maltreatment history rather than trying to relate specific types of abuse to particular adverse health behaviors or health outcomes.
Article
The purpose of this study was to assess the relation of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), including abuse, neglect, and household dysfunction, to the risk of ischemic heart disease (IHD) and to examine the mediating impact on this relation of both traditional IHD risk factors and psychological factors that are associated with ACEs. Retrospective cohort survey data were collected from 17,337 adult health plan members from 1995 to 1997. Logistic regression adjusted for age, sex, race, and education was used to estimate the strength of the ACE-IHD relation and the mediating impact of IHD risk factors in this relation. Nine of 10 categories of ACEs significantly increased the risk of IHD by 1.3- to 1.7-fold versus persons with no ACEs. The adjusted odds ratios for IHD among persons with > or =7 ACEs was 3.6 (95% CI, 2.4 to 5.3). The ACE-IHD relation was mediated more strongly by individual psychological risk factors commonly associated with ACEs than by traditional IHD risk factors. We observed significant association between increased likelihood of reported IHD (adjusted ORs) and depressed affect (2.1, 1.9 to 2.4) and anger (2.5, 2.1 to 3.0) as well as traditional risk factors (smoking, physical inactivity, obesity, diabetes and hypertension), with ORs ranging from 1.2 to 2.7. We found a dose-response relation of ACEs to IHD and a relation between almost all individual ACEs and IHD. Psychological factors appear to be more important than traditional risk factors in mediating the relation of ACEs to the risk of IHD. These findings provide further insights into the potential pathways by which stressful childhood experiences may increase the risk of IHD in adulthood.
Article
Influential studies have cast doubt on the validity of retrospective reports by adults of their own adverse experiences in childhood. Accordingly, many researchers view retrospective reports with scepticism. A computer-based search, supplemented by hand searches, was used to identify studies reported between 1980 and 2001 in which there was a quantified assessment of the validity of retrospective recall of sexual abuse, physical abuse, physical/emotional neglect or family discord, using samples of at least 40. Validity was assessed by means of comparisons with contemporaneous, prospectively obtained, court or clinic or research records; by agreement between retrospective reports of two siblings; and by the examination of possible bias with respect to differences between retrospective and prospective reports in their correlates and consequences. Medium- to long-term reliability of retrospective recall was determined from studies in which the test-retest period extended over at least 6 months. Retrospective reports in adulthood of major adverse experiences in childhood, even when these are of a kind that allow reasonable operationalisation, involve a substantial rate of false negatives, and substantial measurement error. On the other hand, although less easily quantified, false positive reports are probably rare. Several studies have shown some bias in retrospective reports. However, such bias is not sufficiently great to invalidate retrospective case-control studies of major adversities of an easily defined kind. Nevertheless, the findings suggest that little weight can be placed on the retrospective reports of details of early experiences or on reports of experiences that rely heavily onjudgement or interpretation. Retrospective studies have a worthwhile place in research, but further research is needed to examine possible biases in reporting.
Article
First, to explore the utility of the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) in routine primary care through a large community screening program. Next, to compare administration of a second EPDS versus the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) in identifying postnatal depression in the prescreened population. Screening with the EPDS through Maternal and Child Health Centres at 4 months post-partum. Women scoring > or = 12 were assessed against DSM-IV criteria and completed a BDI and a second EPDS. These data were subjected to receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analyses. Of 4148 screened, 533 (12.8%) scored > or = 12. Of these, 344 were assessed against DSM-IV criteria: 193 (56%) - major depressive disorder; 67 (20%) - other diagnoses that incorporated depression. Positive predictive value at screening was therefore 76%. Another 45 (13%) had non-depressive disorders and 39 (11%) were psychiatric non-cases. The BDI was the better diagnostic instrument in the prescreened population, having a significantly higher efficiency as quantified by ROC curve analysis, though the absolute difference in efficiency was small (approximately 6%). Screening with the EPDS integrated well into routine primary care. Two-step screening offers one way of achieving acceptable balances of operational simplicity and diagnostic accuracy.
Article
Alcohol misuse is a common and well-documented source of morbidity and mortality. Brief primary care alcohol counseling has been shown to benefit patients with alcohol misuse. To describe alcohol-related discussions between primary care providers and patients who screened positive for alcohol misuse. An exploratory, qualitative analysis of audiotaped primary care visits containing discussions of alcohol use. Participants were 29 male outpatients at a Veterans Affairs (VA) General Internal Medicine Clinic who screened positive for alcohol misuse and their 14 primary care providers, all of whom were participating in a larger quality improvement trial. Audiotaped visits with any alcohol-related discussion were transcribed and coded using grounded theory and conversation analysis, both qualitative research techniques. Three themes were identified: (1) patients disclosed information regarding their alcohol use, but providers often did not explore these disclosures; (2) advice about alcohol use was typically vague and/or tentative in contrast to smoking-related advice, which was more common and usually more clear and firm; and (3) discomfort on the part of the provider was evident during alcohol-related discussions. Generalizability of findings from this single-site VA study is unknown. Findings from this single site study suggest that provider discomfort and avoidance are important barriers to evidence-based brief alcohol counseling. Further investigation into current alcohol counseling practices is needed to determine whether these patterns extend to other primary care settings, and to inform future educational efforts.
Article
Adult dermatological out patients have a 40% prevalence of psychiatric co-morbidity. If psychiatric co-morbidity is unrecognized, undetected and untreated, the consequences may be fatal. Acne is the most common skin disorder of the second and third decades of life. Acne and its treatments may cause depression. To identify a screening tool to identify depression in adult acne patients. The literature was reviewed to identify validated screening instruments for depressive disorders. Questionnaires studied included the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HAD), the Brief Patient Health Questionnaire (B-PHQ), the General Health Questionnaire-12 item version (GHQ-12), and the World Health Organization-5 Well Being Index (WHO-5). WHO-5 performed best in terms of sensitivity (0.93 for a cut-off score of 13) as well as taking least time to complete (2-5 min) and evaluate (0.5-2 min). WHO-5 can be recommended as part of a two-step screening process for depression in acne patients. Step 1 is the WHO-5. In the case of a positive score, step 2 is a detailed psychosocial assessment.