Carlos Nordt

University of Zurich, Zürich, Zurich, Switzerland

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Publications (57)154.28 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: As leading causes of death, chronic medical diseases, particularly common cardiovascular diseases, are associated with depression. The combination of depression and chronic medical disease in turn is linked with poorer health and premature death. Despite numerous studies on mortality in people with depression and chronic medical disease, the effects of age and gender were not consistently considered. To appropriately estimate mortality in the clinical setting, we aimed to analyse age- and gender-specific mortality profiles in outpatients with depression and chronic medical disease by considering depression severity.
    No preview · Article · Mar 2016 · Journal of Affective Disorders
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    ABSTRACT: Work is beneficial for the recovery from mental illness. Although the approach of individual placement and support (IPS) has been shown to be effective in Europe, it has not yet been widely implemented in European health care systems. The aim of this randomized controlled trial was to assess the effectiveness of IPS for disability pensioners with mental illnesses new on disability benefits in Switzerland. In the study at hand, 250 participants were randomly assigned to either the control or the intervention group. The participants in the intervention group received job coaching according to IPS during 2 years. The control group received no structured support. Both groups were interviewed at baseline and followed up every 6 months (baseline, 6, 12, 16, 18, 24 months) for 2 years. Primary outcome was to obtain a job in the competitive employment. IPS was more effective for the reintegration into the competitive employment market for disability pensioners than the control condition. Thirty-two percent of the participants of the intervention group and 12% of the control group obtained new jobs in the competitive employment. IPS is also effective for the reintegration into competitive employment of people with mental illness receiving disability pensions.
    Preview · Article · Nov 2015 · Frontiers in Public Health
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    ABSTRACT: This study aims to investigate clients' satisfaction with individual placement and support (IPS) at the University Hospital for Psychiatry Zurich (PUK). Furthermore, this study aims to investigate if clients feel the approach of IPS as a useful approach to fulfill their needs. One hundred twenty-five people were recruited from one of the three IPS services of PUK and were asked to complete a structured questionnaire. The following IPS services were available: (i) randomized controlled trial (RCT) ZHEPP (www.zhepp.ch), (ii) RCT ZInEP (www.zinep.ch), and (iii) us clinical supported employment service of PUK (IPS-PUK). The clients mostly indicated that IPS was generally useful and fitted their needs. Overall satisfaction of the participants with the IPS services of the PUK was very high. Furthermore, client satisfaction and symptom severity are inversely associated. In conclusion, participants of the IPS services received the support they were looking for. This means that the approach of IPS fits the needs of different patient groups and can be used without any modifications. The most important limitation is the unequal group sizes. Therefore, the obtained results need to be strengthened by future research.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2015 · Frontiers in Public Health
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    ABSTRACT: Chronic diseases are often associated with cycling in and out of treatment. We used data of a large opioid substitution treatment case register to (1) identify associated factors and (2) integrate retention and readmission into a model of overall participation over subsequent treatment episodes of various groups. Data of all 9,407 patients undergoing 26,545 methadone or buprenorphine substitution treatment episodes between 1992 and 2012 in the canton of Zurich, Switzerland, were analyzed. We used extended survival analysis to estimate the duration of, and time between, treatment episodes, with the number of episodes, gender, nationality, administration route, age at onset of first regular heroin use, and provider type as independent variables. A similar analysis was applied to estimate overall participation (the probability of being in treatment at a given day after first entry independent of current number of treatment episode) and to test for group differences. The time between treatment episodes shortened with the increasing number of episodes. Retention slightly increased after the first episode and then shortened for later treatment episodes. Effect sizes were generally rather weak (odds ratio ≤1.47). Effects were usually equal for all episodes, and if changing, weakened for later episodes. The complex process of leaving and entering treatment as well as the daily probability of being in treatment independent of treatment episode can be predicted by comprehensible statistical models applied to patient-period data sets. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
    No preview · Article · May 2015 · Journal of Clinical Epidemiology
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    ABSTRACT: As with previous economic downturns, there has been debate about an association between the 2008 economic crisis, rising unemployment, and suicide. Unemployment directly affects individuals' health and, unsurprisingly, studies have proposed an association between unemployment and suicide. However, a statistical model examining the relationship between unemployment and suicide by considering specific time trends among age-sex-country subgroups over wider world regions is still lacking. We aimed to enhance knowledge of the specific effect of unemployment on suicide by analysing global public data classified according to world regions.
    No preview · Article · Mar 2015 · The Lancet Psychiatry
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    ABSTRACT: Background It is unclear whether there is a direct link between economic crises and changes in suicide rates. Aims The Lopez-Ibor Foundation launched an initiative to study the possible impact of the economic crisis on European suicide rates. Method Data was gathered and analysed from 29 European countries and included the number of deaths by suicide in men and women, the unemployment rate, the gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, the annual economic growth rate and inflation. Results There was a strong correlation between suicide rates and all economic indices except GPD per capita in men but only a correlation with unemployment in women. However, the increase in suicide rates occurred several months before the economic crisis emerged. Conclusions Overall, this study confirms a general relationship between the economic environment and suicide rates; however, it does not support there being a clear causal relationship between the current economic crisis and an increase in the suicide rate.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2014 · The British Journal of Psychiatry
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    ABSTRACT: Objective: The relationship of work-related discrimination to the change in self-stigma and stigma stress was assessed among supported employment participants in Switzerland. Methods: Self-stigma and the cognitive appraisal of mental illness stigma as a stressor were measured at baseline among supported employment participants (N=116). These variables and work-related discrimination in the past year were assessed one year later (N=96). Results: Compared with participants who did not find employment (N=30), those who worked without experiencing discrimination (N=25) had lower levels of self-stigma and stigma stress at one year. Among those who worked and reported work-related discrimination (N=38), these measures did not decrease significantly. Conclusions: Experiencing discrimination at work may determine whether employment has positive effects in terms of self-stigma and stigma stress among individuals with mental illness. Interventions to reduce discrimination in work settings and to improve coping resources of these individuals could augment the positive effects of supported employment.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2014 · Psychiatric services (Washington, D.C.)
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    Michael Liebrenz · Rudolf Stohler · Carlos Nordt
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    ABSTRACT: Background We have sought to identify ethnic- and gender-specific differences in HIV prevalence among heroin users receiving opioid maintenance treatment in the canton of Zurich, Switzerland. Methods We used a generalized linear model (GEE) to analyze data from the anonymized case register for all opioid maintenance treatments in the canton of Zurich. Patients who received either methadone or buprenorphine between 1991 and 2012 (n = 11,422) were evaluated for gender (male vs. female), ethnic background (Swiss vs. non-Swiss), and lifetime method of drug use (ever injector vs. non-injector). We addressed missing data by multiple imputation. Results The overall prevalence of HIV among patients declined substantially from 33.7% in 1991 to 10.6% in 2012 in the complete dataset. In the imputed datasets, the respective prevalence dropped from 32.8% in 1991 to 9.7% in 2012. Non-injectors had a four to five times lower risk ratio (RR) compared to the reference group, ‘Swiss males who ever injected’. In addition, we found a significantly higher risk ratio of HIV prevalence among females who had ever injected; this was true both for the complete dataset and the imputed dataset (Swiss RR 1.18 CI 95% 1.04–1.34, non-Swiss RR 1.58 CI 95% 1.18–2.12). Conclusion In this population, gender, ethnic background, and lifetime method of drug use influenced the risk of being HIV positive. Different access to treatment and different characteristics of risk exposure among certain subgroups might explain these findings. In particular, the higher risk for women who inject drugs—especially for those with an immigrant background—warrants additional research. Further exploration should identify what factors deter women from using available HIV-prevention measures and whether and how these measures can be better adapted to high-risk groups.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2014 · Harm Reduction Journal
  • Ingeborg Warnke · Wulf Rössler · Carlos Nordt · Uwe Herwig
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    ABSTRACT: Questions under study: Restricted government budgets are forcing countries to implement more efficient health measures. Unlike in somatic medicine, the process of evaluating payment systems in psychiatry in Switzerland is ongoing. A pilot approach in one psychiatric hospital, here called "new remuneration system (NRS)", was introduced to better control length of stay (LOS) by combining a lump sum with degressive daily rates. This is a first evaluation of the NRS in terms of a reduction of the LOS, and the prevention of early readmissions by analysing meaningful outcome categories. Methods: The total sample consisted of N = 66,626 psychiatric inpatient episodes and a subsample of N = 60,847. Data were collected from the hospital using the NRS and three comparison hospitals in the Canton of Zurich. The observation period covered 2005 to 2011, the years before and after the implementation of the NRS in 2009. To examine the outcome categories, general logistic models were used. Results: The median LOS at all four hospitals was 21 days (IQR: 46-8). In the NRS-hospital, there was a significantly higher proportion of 6 to10day stays after 2009, indicating an influence of the lumpsum measure. At the same time, data revealed a somewhat lower proportion of readmissions within 30 days in the NRS-hospital. In general, effect sizes were small. Conclusions: Within the observation period of three years since 2009, the NRS had a small influence on LOS and early readmissions. The stability of effects needs to be monitored. More sophisticated modellings of the NRS might lead to further insights.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2014 · Swiss medical weekly: official journal of the Swiss Society of Infectious Diseases, the Swiss Society of Internal Medicine, the Swiss Society of Pneumology
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    ABSTRACT: Introduction: Although antidepressants play a major role in the treatment of patients with depression, it is unclear which specific antidepressants are more efficacious than others. This study aims to analyze the relationship between several antidepressant substances and the time to readmission as well as the probability of being in hospital in a given week by using prescription data. Methods: The database was health-insurance claim data from the new Federal States in Germany. The analysis consisted of all patients with unipolar depression at their index admission in 2007 (N = 1803). Patients were followed up for 2 years after discharge from index hospitalization. Statistical analyses were conducted by discrete-time hazards models and general estimation equation models, accounting for various predictors. Results: Of all prescribed antidepressant substances, sertraline was related to an increased time to readmission by 37% and to a reduction in the probability of being in hospital in a given week by 40%. However, it was prescribed to only about 5% of the patients. Conclusion: In this study, only sertraline appeared to have clinical and economic advantages. It is remarkable that just a minority of patients received sertraline in our study, thus differing from the prescription pattern in the US.
    Full-text · Article · May 2014 · Frontiers in Public Health
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Self-motivation, subjective norms, and support of social network are central factors in supported employment. Objective: To measure these factors a short questionnaire was developed and tested. Methods: 116 people with mental illness were enrolled. Results: In the present study we found that self-motivation was high; 98% of the consumers think competitive employment is important or very important. The perceived motivation of the social network was also high, but significantly lower than self-motivation. Furthermore, the consumers assume that their social network supports their desire to work. Conclusion: People with mental illness are motivated to work, they are not idle.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2014 · Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation
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    ABSTRACT: The largest European multicenter randomized controlled trial to date on the effectiveness of supported employment (EQOLISE) was conducted in six European centres until 2005. It revealed that the intervention "individual placement and support" was more effective than conventional prevocational training services. The aim of this investigation was to assess the Zurich sample (individuals with schizophrenic, schizoaffective or bipolar disorders) 24 months after termination of the EQOLISE trial in terms of working situation, income, and hospital admissions. More favorable outcomes concerning these parameters were assumed for the intervention group. Assessment of the working situation and psychiatric hospitalizations since the end as well as the development of salaries since the start of EQOLISE. Comparisons between groups and illustration of incomes using a random coefficient model were conducted. 50 % of the original sample could be assessed. All subjects who worked in competitive workplaces at the end of EQOLISE were met in a different situation. No differences were found concerning hospital admissions. The mean monthly income considerably increased during EQOLISE and decreased during the third year. At the time of follow-up it was approximately at the same level as the slightly increased control group. This investigation points at limited sustainability of supported employment among individuals with severe mental disorders in terms of maintenance of employment and income if the job coaching is not continued.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2013 · Neuropsychiatrie: Klinik, Diagnostik, Therapie und Rehabilitation: Organ der Gesellschaft Österreichischer Nervenärzte und Psychiater

  • No preview · Article · Jan 2013
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    ABSTRACT: Background Tourette syndrome is a neuropsychiatric disorder characterized by motor and phonic tics. Deficient motor inhibition underlying tics is one of the main hypotheses in its pathophysiology. Therefore the question arises whether this supposed deficient motor inhibition affects also voluntary movements. Despite severe motor tics, different personalities who suffer from Tourette perform successfully as neurosurgeon, pilot or professional basketball player. Methods For the investigation of fine motor skills we conducted a motor performance test battery in an adult Tourette sample and an age matched group of healthy controls. Results The Tourette patients showed a significant lower performance in the categories steadiness of both hands and aiming of the right hand in comparison to the healthy controls. A comparison of patients’ subgroup without comorbidities or medication and healthy controls revealed a significant difference in the category steadiness of the right hand. Conclusions Our results show that steadiness and visuomotor integration of fine motor skills are altered in our adult sample but not precision and speed of movements. This alteration pattern might be the clinical vignette of complex adaptations in the excitability of the motor system on the basis of altered cortical and subcortical components. The structurally and functionally altered neuronal components could encompass orbitofrontal, ventrolateral prefrontal and parietal cortices, the anterior cingulate, amygdala, primary motor and sensorimotor areas including altered corticospinal projections, the corpus callosum and the basal ganglia.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2012 · BMC Neurology
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    ABSTRACT: Background Vocational integration of people with mental illness is poor despite their willingness to work. The ‘Individual Placement and Support’ (IPS) model which emphasises rapid and direct job placement and continuing support to patient and employer has proven to be the most effective vocational intervention programme. Various studies have shown that every second patient with severe mental illness was able to find competitive employment within 18 months. However, the goal of taking up employment within two months was rarely achieved. Thus, we aim to test whether the new concept of limited placement budgets increases the effectiveness of IPS. Methods/Design Six job coaches in six out-patients psychiatric clinics in the Canton of Zurich support unemployed patients of their clinic who seek competitive employment. Between June 2010 and May 2011 patients (N=100) are randomly assigned to three different placement budgets of 25h, 40h, or 55h working hours of job coaches. Support lasts two years for those who find a job. The intervention ends for those who fail to find competitive employment when the respective placement budgets run out. The primary outcome measure is the time between study inclusion and first competitive employment that lasted three months or longer. Over a period of three years interviews are carried out every six months to measure changes in motivation, stigmatization, social network and social support, quality of life, job satisfaction, financial situation, and health conditions. Cognitive and social-cognitive tests are conducted at baseline to control for confounding variables. Discussion This study will show whether the effectiveness of IPS can be increased by the new concept of limited placement budgets. It will also be examined whether competitive employment leads in the long term to an improvement of mental illness, to a transfer of the psychiatric support system to private and vocational networks, to an increase in financial independence, to a reduction of perceived and internalized stigma, and to an increase in quality of life and job satisfaction of the patient. In addition, factors connected with fast competitive employment and holding that job down in the long term are being examined (motivation, stigmatization, social and financial situation). Trial register ISRCTN89670872
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2012 · BMC Psychiatry
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    ABSTRACT: Tourette Syndrome (TS) is characterized by motor and vocal tics. Its pharmacological treatment is often a challenge because of the so-called tachyphylactic effects. Aripiprazole has been reported to be effective in small case series with short follow-up periods. In a retrospective analysis, we assessed the effect of off-label treatments with aripiprazole in 20 adult patients (mean age 27.4) divided in a group of severely [67 Yale Global Tourette Severity Scale (YGTTS)-total] and moderately (43.3 YGTTS-total) affected patients. TS patients were treated with aripiprazole (mean 11.8 mg daily) and followed for up to 56 months. Applying a random coefficient model, we found a significant benefit resulting from treatment with aripiprazole. This effect was larger in the severely affected patient group in comparison with the moderately affected patient group. The effect was stable over a time period up to 56 months. Aripiprazole, a neuroleptic drug of the third generation with a partial D(2) -agonism is effective in moderately and severely affected adult Tourette patients. We add to the current knowledge through our data extending the follow-up interval up to a maximum of 56 months. All available clinical data strongly support the initiation of a double-blind placebo or other neuroleptic substance controlled trial.
    No preview · Article · Jul 2012 · Human Psychopharmacology Clinical and Experimental
  • B Lay · C Nordt · W Rössler
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    ABSTRACT: The use of coercive measures in psychiatry is still poorly understood. Most empirical research has been limited to compulsory admission and to risk factors on an individual patient level. This study addresses three coercive measures and the role of predictive factors at both patient and institutional levels. Using the central psychiatric register that covers all psychiatric hospitals in Canton Zurich (1.3 million people), Switzerland, we traced all inpatients in 2007 aged 18-70 (n = 9698). We used GEE models to analyse variation in rates between psychiatric hospitals. Overall, we found quotas of 24.8% involuntary admissions, 6.4% seclusion/restraint and 4.2% coerced medication. Results suggest that the kind and severity of mental illness are the most important risk factors for being subjected to any form of coercion. Variation across the six psychiatric hospitals was high, even after accounting for risk factors on the patient level suggesting that centre effects are an important source of variability. However, effects of the hospital characteristics 'size of the hospital', 'length of inpatient stay', and 'work load of the nursing staff' were only weak ('bed occupancy rate' was not statistically significant). The significant variation in use of coercive measures across psychiatric hospitals needs further study.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2011 · European Psychiatry
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    Preview · Article · Dec 2010 · Neuropsychiatrie: Klinik, Diagnostik, Therapie und Rehabilitation: Organ der Gesellschaft Österreichischer Nervenärzte und Psychiater
  • Carlos Nordt · Rudolf Stohler
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    ABSTRACT: To explore the combined effects of street-level law enforcement and substitution treatment programs on drug-related mortality, taking into account prevalence of heroin use and changes in injecting behaviour. Time trend analysis using annual police reports and case register data of opioid substitution treatments in Switzerland, 1975-2007. Drug-related mortality increased during times of more intense street-level law enforcement [odds ratio (OR) 1.32, 95% confidence interval (95% CI) 1.15-1.51], and the number of drug-related deaths predicted the number of heroin possession offences 2 years later (r = 0.97, P < 0.001). Substitution treatment had a protective effect on drug-related mortality (OR 0.23, 95% CI 0.18-0.30). Surprisingly, the number of drug-related deaths was substantially biased by an oscillation period of 14 years (OR 1.24, 95% CI 1.17-1.32). Our analysis revealed that the amount of police resources allocated to law enforcement was determined rationally, however, on biased grounds and with untoward consequences. Substitution treatment of heroin users reduced drug-related mortality in the long run, but different factors masked its impact for several years. Therefore, the introduction-or the expansion-of opioid substitution treatment programs should not be promoted with the argument of an immediate reduction of drug-related deaths in a country.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2010 · Drug and Alcohol Review
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    ABSTRACT: In recent years, admission rates to psychiatric inpatient care have steadily increased, whilst the number of beds has progressively decreased, at least in german-speaking countries. A better understanding of risk factors concerning psychiatric readmissions is indispensable in order to avoid unnecessary inpatient treatment. The aim of our study was to test the influence of various clinical and social factors on the time to readmission. We analysed data of an observational study considering especially vulnerable patients with schizophrenia (N = 103). We applied multivariate time-hazards models (survival analysis) to examine the predictors of the time to readmission within 12 months. Independent variables were either time-varying (e.g. Needs for care Assessment Scale (NCA)) or time-invariant (e.g. age). About 50% of the patients were readmitted during the observation period, many of them within the first few weeks. In the final models clinical needs, and a social need increased the risk of readmission, whereas the use of neuroleptic medication reduced the risk. There was an interaction effect between social support and time. Both, clinical and social factors influence the risk of psychiatric readmission. Therefore, the prevention of readmissions should focus on the patients' skills to manage his/her illness and on the social support that the patients receive.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2010 · Neuropsychiatrie: Klinik, Diagnostik, Therapie und Rehabilitation: Organ der Gesellschaft Österreichischer Nervenärzte und Psychiater

Publication Stats

1k Citations
154.28 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2002-2015
    • University of Zurich
      • • Klinik für Psychiatrie und Psychotherapie
      • • Institut für Sozial-und Präventivmedizin
      Zürich, Zurich, Switzerland
  • 2014
    • University Hospital Zürich
      Zürich, Zurich, Switzerland
  • 2004-2010
    • Psychiatrische Universitätsklinik Zürich
      Zürich, Zurich, Switzerland