Background. The most significant features for clinical diagnosis of schizotypal personality disorder (SPD) are cognitive-perceptual and disorganized symptoms. Experimental study of visual perceptual processes is important to elucidate the psychological mechanisms of cognitive-perceptual impairment in SPD.
Objective. To research the performance of visual perceptual tasks in SPD.
Design. Series I and II presented the subjects with visual perceptual tasks with different types of instructions (vague, verbal, or visual perceptual cues). The Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS-R) was also administered. The participants were 39 SPD patients, 36 obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (OCPD) patients (F.21.8, F.60.5 in ICD-10, respectively), and 102 healthy controls.
Results. SPD patients had a significantly lower number of correct answers in conditions of vague instruction and verbal cues in Series I of a visual-perceptual task in comparison with healthy subjects (р ≤ 0.01). With visual perceptual cues in Series II, patients with SPD had the same number of correct answers as controls, whereas OCPD patients had the same number of correct answers as controls with verbal cues in Series I. SPD patients had significantly lower scores in most verbal and nonverbal WAIS-R subtests in comparison with controls. SPD patients differed from OCPD patients in that they had lower scores in the “Information” (p ≤ 0.05) and “Comprehension” (p ≤ 0.05) subtests.
Conclusion. With visual-perceptual cues, SPD patients were able to achieve normative results in the performance of visual-perceptual tasks, whereas patients with OCPD demonstrated lower productivity. In SPD patients, the basic impairments were associated with difficulties in inhibition of peculiar responses, stability of a subjective manner of performance and inability to revise it, low orientation to the model, and slipping into subjective associations with the stimuli.
Keywords: personality disorders/ schizotypal personality disorder/ obsessive-compulsive personality disorder/ cognitive functions/ visual perceptual tasks/ Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS-R)
Background. People with alcohol-addicted parents are at risk of psychoactive addictions, co-dependency, and suicidal behavior. Most studies of these people are aimed at confirming the inevitability of the impact of negative childhood experiences on their lives, and thus do not seek to identify resource factors which would allow them to overcome the negative emotions they experienced.
Objective. The purpose of this study was to create a model of resource factors which would allow people with alcohol-addicted parents to overcome the negative emotions they experienced.
Design. The participants were 58 healthy individuals (17 men and 41 women; M=25.2; SD=4.4) whose parents were alcohol addicts (they were participants in the 12-step recovery program "Adult Children of Alcoholics"), and 50 healthy individuals (15 men and 35 women, M=24.2; SD=3.7) whose parents were not alcohol addicts. The participants completed the questionnaires "Interpersonal Guilt," "Family Emotional Communication," and "Coping Strategies," and were interviewed on the resource factors which allowed them to overcome negative emotions. We used the content analysis of the interviews and latent variable modeling to analyze the questionnaires.
Results. The model of resource factors (CFI=0.895, RMSEA=0.064) showed that the rules set by the parental dysfunctional family (the taboo on the expressing emotions, and external well-being) were associated with being unable to recognize current negative emotions and with avoiding problems. The ability to recognize negative emotions was connected with the participant’s willingness to accept responsibility for his/her life. The resource factors which allowed these subjects to overcome their negative emotions included: communication with relatives and friends; keeping a diary of emotions; and participating in recovery programs.
Conclusion. Our model of resource factors explains the mechanism connecting dysfunctional family rules with the resource factors and negative emotions experienced by people with alcohol-addicted parents.
Keywords: 12-step recovery program/ alcohol addiction/ content analysis/ guilt/ latent variable modeling/ resource factors/ shame
Background. The Copenhagen Burnout Inventory (CBI) has demonstrated good psychometric properties among different populations, but there is no known data on its validity among Russian-speaking medical students. The CBI-Student Survey focuses only on fatigue, but measures exhaustion in four different life domains: Personal Burnout (PB), Studies-Related Burnout (SRB), Colleague-Related Burnout (CRB), and Teacher-Related Burnout (TRB).
Objective. To investigate the psychometric properties of the Russian version of the Copenhagen Burnout Inventory–Student Survey (R-CBI-S).
Design. A cross-sectional study was carried out among 771 medical students at Astana Medical University (Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan). Statistical analyses included test-retest reliability, internal consistency, item analysis, convergent and concurrent validity, and confirmatory factor analysis. Concurrent validity was evaluated by bivariate correlations of R-CBI-S with anxiety, depression, and satisfaction with the study.
Results. Test-retest reliability showed an ICC of 0.81. All item-total correlations for the total scale were positive (range 0.31–0.76). The Cronbach’s alpha coefficient was 0.94 (0.896 for PB, 0.884 for SRB, 0.874 for CRB, and 0.926 for TRB). The Barlett’s sphericity test result was significant (p < 0.001), and the KMO measure of sampling adequacy exceeded 0.947. Convergent validity analysis results: PB (AVE = 0.52, CR = 0.87), SRB (AVE = 0.50, CR = 0.87), CRB (AVE = 0.51, CR = 0.86), TRB (AVE = 0.56, CR = 0.88). The R-CBI-S achieved good levels of goodness-of-fit indices (RMSEA = 0.0611; CFI = 0.940; TLI = 0.933).
Conclusion. The test results indicated that the R-CBI-S scale appears to be a reliable and valid instrument. The R-CBI-S may be a useful tool in future research to identify burnout factors based on specific life domains for developing effective prevention measures among medical students.
Keywords: dissociation/ dissociative phenomena/ dissociative disorders/ non-psychotic mental disorders/ dissociation scale
Background. Dissociation is a generally recognized phenomenon in psychology and psychiatry; however, questions are still not fully resolved about the difference between pathological and normal dissociation, as well as the role of dissociation, depending on its aetiology, in the formation of clinical manifestations of mental disorders.
Objective. To complement the existing data about the significance of dissociation in non-psychotic mental disorders.
Design. Using the Dissociative Experience Scale (DES), we screened 62 patients (13 male and 49 female) from the Non-Psychotic Conditions Inpatient Department of the Udmurt Republican Clinical Psychiatric Hospital (Izhevsk, Russia). Nineteen of the patients had mental disorders of organic aetiology and 43 patients had mental disorders of psychogenic aetiology.
Results. Dissociation at the pathological level was detected in 12.9% of the patients, all of them female. Among patients with psychogenic disorders, the proportion of patients with pathological dissociation was more than three times that of patients with organic disorders. Among the particular dissociative phenomena, absorption had the highest average severity, both in the general sample and in each aetiological group of patients, while dissociative amnesia had the lowest average severity. The highest levels of dissociation were found in young female patients who had never been married. In patients with psychogenic disorders, the average dissociation severity was significantly higher than in the general population, while in patients with organic disorders it was significantly lower.
Conclusion. The dissociation phenomenon may play a significant symptom-forming role in young women suffering from non-psychotic mental disorders of psychogenic aetiology. In the case of organic mental disorders, the severity of dissociative manifestations decreases even below the conditionally normal level, which may indirectly indicate the destruction of dissociative physiological mechanisms by an organic brain process.
Background. Fatigue is the most common complaint by children both during and after cancer treatment, but in Russia, there is no reliable method for assessing fatigue.
Objective. To develop a Russian version of the Turkish Scale for the Assessment of Fatigue in Pediatric Oncology Patients Ages 7-18.
Design. Our first step was to translate all the items of the Turkish questionnaire into Russian. Then, through discussion, we created a single proposition for each item. The next step was obtaining expert opinions to assess the validity. Once the expert estimates agreed, a pilot version of the questionnaire was formed. The next step was to collect a large sample of patients to study the reliability and validity of the questionnaire.
Results. As a result of factor analysis, three factors were identified. The first factor was "fatigue associated with actions;" the second was "fatigue as feeling;" and the third was "fatigue associated with sleep difficulties." The children's and parents’ versions had the same factor structure.
Conclusion. This study showed the possibility of using the questionnaire in a Russian sample. That’s why it is necessary to continue collecting and analyzing data in this direction. The reliability of the test was also assessed. The reliability of the parent version scored a Cronbach’s alpha of 0.91. The reliability of the children’s version showed a Cronbach’s alpha of 0.93.
Keywords: fatigue; pediatric cancer; questionnaire; adolescent; quality of life
Background. In European countries, postpartum depression (PPD) occurs in 13–19% of women. The statistics indicate that postpartum depressive disorders affect up to 300,000 women in Russia annually. There is still an extremely acute lack of psychological comfort provided to women during labor in Russia.
Objective. To our knowledge, ours is the first study that examines the association between childbirth experience and the risk of PPD in Russia.
Design. We collected data from 190 Russian-speaking mothers, ages 19 to 46, (M = 32 +4.3) two months after their delivery.
Results. Birth satisfaction and physical well-being two months after delivery were significantly inversely associated with PPD. Birth satisfaction negatively correlated with the perceived severity and unpredictability of labor, and positively correlated with physical well-being two months after delivery. The presence of a partner and a personal midwife or doula at birth was associated with higher birth satisfaction.
Conclusion. Our results emphasize the significance of childbirth satisfaction in the context of PPD and suggest the importance of individual professional support during labor.
Keywords: postpartum depression (PPD); birth satisfaction; maternal mental health; prevention of postpartum depression; doula support
Background. At the beginning of 20thcentury, the phenomenon of oddity began to be studied. It was defined as a set of characteristics responsible for an individual giving the impression of being unusual, odd, and peculiar. Later, psychiatrists integrated oddity into the concept of schizotypy. Yet, while considered a part of the schizotypy construct, oddity has remained singular and maintained its status as an independent dimension.
Objective.The present article discusses oddity as a set of particular clinical traits that can be evaluated both by self-report measures and clinical assessment. We set out to investigate the oddity phenomena as manifested in a clinical sample, in order to delineate key features that constitute this concept.
Design. Seventy-one patients were selected according to a specific set of criteria and subjected to a set of self-report measures (the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire and the Adult Personality Traits Questionnaire), a clinical interview, and a pathopsychological experiment. A number of cognitive, behavioral, and emotional characteristics were analyzed. An intra-group comparison was carried out in order to clarify the potential differences between the self-reported and clinically assessed phenomenon of oddity.
Results. The study’s first finding was that the SPQ-74 does not identify odd personalities in the general population, as reflected in the fact that the sample’s average scores proved to be low. Secondly, restricted emotionality and a deficit in social interactions proved to be the prevalent characteristics of the sample of “odd” individuals. Furthermore, a set of certain speech peculiarities (word coinage, bizarrerie, etc.) and thinking impairments of various types (distortion of abstraction level and motivational deficit) emerged as prominent characteristics in the majority of subjects. Finally, it was determined that clinical assessment allows for a more comprehensive evaluation of the psychology of odd personalities than self-report measures, due to a number of the personality, temperamental, and cognitive characteristics that the latter tend to exhibit.
Conclusion. “Odd” individuals can be characterized by a number of cognitive, emotional, and behavioral features independent of social perception and relevant to clinical practice; they can be captured more successfully by the application of qualitative methods. Further research is needed to elaborate this set of traits and test this hypothesis on new samples.
Keywords: oddity; schizotypy; schizophrenia-spectrum disorders; peculiar speech; Verschroben; psychological assessment
Background. This article is devoted to the problem of excessively rigid behavior, which the author has named “fixed forms of behavior” (FFB). This term was suggested to me by the concepts of P. Janet (idéefixe), S. Freud (Fixierung), and D. Uznadze (fiksirovanaya ustanovka– fixed set/attitude). By FFB, the author understands a broad spectrum of behaviors of a person or a group of people, which, according to the cultural norms of a given society for persons of a certain age, gender, and status,have become inappropriate, yet are repeated in situations objectively requiring that they change; the degree of realization and acceptance of the need for this change can vary.Results. Through literature analysis and the collection of experimental data over many years of research, in which over 1,150 persons took part – 550 healthy subjects and 600 mental patients from a broad spectrum – and on the basis of a biopsychosocionoetic model of the nature of man and his health, and a system-network approach, it has become possible to distinguish the following models to explain the nature of fixed forms of behavior: neurodynamic, energy-economic, phylogenetic, person-environment relationship, dispositional, stressogenic, pathogenic, psychodynamic, learning (behavioral-cognitive), system (an excessively rigid system and structural relations between levels of action).
Keywords: FFB, fixed forms of behavior, individual and group systems, biopsychosocionoetic model, system-network approach
Background. The cognitive model of personality disorders has differentiated 10 patterns of dysfunctional beliefs that lead to specific deficient and highly developed coping strategies. The Personality Belief Questionnaire (PBQ) is a self-report instrument based on this model, which differentiates patients with avoidant, dependent, obsessive-compulsive, narcissistic, paranoid, histrionic, passive-aggressive, antisocial, and borderline disorders from each other and from patients with other mental illnesses.
Objective. To validate the Russian version of the PBQ in clinical and control samples.
Design. The PBQ was translated and back-translated. 591 adults without mental illnesses and 200 in patients with different mental illnesses (predominantly affective disorders, personality disorders, schizotypal disorder, and schizophrenia) filled out the Russian version of the PBQ. 178 participants from the control sample and all 200 patients also filled out the Symptom Checklist-90 Revised. 78 participants from the control sample and 58 patients filled out the Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory – III. 54 participants from the control sample filled out the PBQ again after three weeks to check for test-retest reliability.
Results. The Russian version of the PBQ demonstrated good consistency (Cronbach’s alphas .74 – .88) in both samples and test-retest stability (r = .54 – .76) in the control sample. In line with previous findings, there were high correlations between the scales. Higher scores for avoidant, dependent, passive-aggressive, paranoid, and borderline beliefs and probably histrionic beliefs are typical for patients with different mental illnesses compared to the control sample and especially for patients with schizotypal disorder. The convergent and discriminant validity of the PBQ are supported by specific correlations with clinical personality patterns both in the controls and the clinical sample. Any dysfunctional beliefs are related to more general psychopathological complaints.
Conclusion. The data support the validity and reliability of the Russian version of the PBQ. Both in the control and clinical samples, dysfunctional beliefs have a mixed structure and are related to general psychopathology.
Keywords: reliability; mental illnesses; cognitive model of personality disorders; validation; Personality Beliefs Questionnaire
Background. It is known that the earlier a child is diagnosed with developmental delay (DD), the more promising his/her cognitive development can be. Various screenings are used worldwide for early detection of developmental problems. However, timely diagnosis of DD is not sufficiently carried out in Russia at present.
Objective. Elaboration of screening scales to quickly monitor the mental development of five- to six-year-old Russian children was the objective of this study. The scales we developed involved the use of modern information technologies to obtain reliable results.
Design. This study was carried out with a sample of 1,860 children. The formal procedure for multilateral monitoring of child development was used for data collection, involving a much more extensive set of tasks than in traditional tests of abilities; this allowed for a wider variation of the factor structure. For the five-year-olds, 349 tasks were used, and 292 for the six-year-olds. To construct scales for each age group (six–seven items in each), which would most accurately predict the diagnosis (Norm or DD), factor and discriminant analysis were carried out. To verify the prediction model, structural equation modeling (SEM) was used.
Results. As a result of the study, we developed scales which had similar types of variables for each age group (simpler for the five-year-olds and more complex for the six-year-olds). The common variables were logical reasoning, motor skills, and general awareness; two other scales were added for the six-year-olds: sustained attention and counting. According to the SEM, these scales are indicators of the general ability factor, and the latter one (general awareness) is the main predictor of the diagnosis.
Conclusions. Short scales for rapid identification of DD in Russian preschoolers were constructed, which allow the use of computer technology to uncover the risk group among five- and six-year-olds in a timely fashion, and have high sensitivity and specificity of the forecast (not lower than 94%).
Keywords: screening; developmental delay (DD); construction of scales; structural equation modeling (SEM); five- to six-year-olds
Background. Children undergoing cancer treatment face a number of emotional, physical, and other problems leading to distress that need to be identified in a timely fashion. Regular assessment of patients’ and their caregivers’ psychosocial health care needs during the patients’ hospital stays has become the standard of psychological care.
Objective. This study was conducted to determine the validity of the Distress Rating Scale (DRS) on a Russian pediatric sample. The DRS appeared to be a reliable pediatric measure of patients’ distress level.
Design. One hundred fifty-nine (159) children of ages 7-17 with cancer and blood disorders, 153 caregivers, and 51 physicians were included in our study. Forty-five families were re-assessed as a test-retest group after a four-week interval. The DRS was validated through the use of the Children's Depression Inventory (CDI) by M. Kovacs and by the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory (PedsQL 4.0).
Results. The convergent validity of the DRS's Russian version was shown by the reasonable agreement between the children's distress level and standardized measure scores. The criterion validity was demonstrated by significant correlations between the children’s DRS self-reports, and those of their parents and physicians. The robustness and consistency of the results in the primary and repeated assessments between the DRS, the CDI, and the PedsQL, proved the reliability of the scale. Age-specific cut-off scores were determined.
Conclusion. The Russian version of the DRS is a valid tool for rapid and reliable assessment of children’s emotional distress in order to identify their needs for psychological assistance in a timely manner.
Keywords: oncology; pediatric; distress; screening; thermometer; validation; psychological adjustment, Distress Rating Scale (DRS)
Background. Rape myths are usually described as a widely-accepted set of false beliefs and attitudes about victims and perpetrators of sexual assault. These beliefs serve to deny, downplay, or justify sexual violence that men commit against women.The Acceptance of Modern Myths about Sexual Aggression (AMMSA) scale assesses those stereotypical beliefs about sexual aggression in a more subtle way than traditional measurements of rape myths, which often use rather blatant wording.
Objective. To develop a Russian version of the sixteen-item AMMSA scale.
Design. Non-experimental design. Participants were recruited online. In total, data of 270 Russian female participants and 131 German female participants were analyzed using exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis. Convergent and discriminant validity were assessed using correlational analyses with other constructs that are believed to be related to AMMSA to different degrees (hostile sexism, benevolent sexism, traditional gender role preferences, and impression management).
Results. It was found that the Russian AMMSA, just like the German AMMSA, was unidimensional, normally distributed, had high internal consistency, and showed good construct validity.
Conclusion. The validation of a Russian version of the AMMSA forms an important first step for studying beliefs about sexual aggression in Russian society. The Russian AMMSA scale is a valid and reliable instrument for measuring modern myths about sexual aggression. Future studies are needed to test whether there are gender differences in the Russian population.
Keywords: AMMSA; rape myths; rape myth acceptance; scale construction; sexism; violence against women
Background. Aging is associated with decline in various cognitive functions, including task switching – the ability to shift quickly between tasks and mindsets. Previous research has shown that older adults exhibit less efficient task switching. Mathematical modeling of cognitive processes involved in switching between tasks may shed light on the sources of switching inefficiency in normal and pathological cognitive aging.
Objective. To investigate possible sources of task-switching decline in normal and pathological (mild cognitive impairment, MCI) cognitive aging using the Diffusion Model (DM).
Design. 57 young adults, 34 healthy older participants, and 5 MCI-diagnosed older participants performed the commonly used Number-Letter switching task. Reaction times (RT) and accuracy were measured and Diffusion Models were fitted to individual reaction time distribution to obtain parameters characterizing processes involved in task switching: active, controlled task-set reconfiguration; passive, automatic task-set inertia; and response caution.
Results. Older age and MCI-pathology-related effects on switching efficiency were found for RT and, partly, for accuracy. After controlling for possible age differences between the two older groups, active processes of task-set reconfiguration had a clear MCI-related deficit, while passive, automatic task-set inertia components only exhibited a general effect of aging (pathological or not). Response caution was only related to older age, with no MCI effect.
Conclusion. Effortful task-set reconfiguration is sensitive to both age and MCI pathology, while passive processes of task-set inertia dissipation is only subject to age changes. The results support the idea of different dynamics of controlled and automatic cognitive processes in normal and pathological (MCI) aging.
Keywords: cognitive aging, mild cognitive impairment, task switching, drift-diffusion model, task-set reconfiguration, task-set inertia, response caution
Background. The need to evaluate the emotional changes women experience during the diagnostic stage of breast cancer creates the need for easily applicable short screening tools; thus, evaluations which rely on a single question and visual analogical scales are widely used in hospital environments.
Objective. This study aimed to determine the optimal cut-off points for anxiety, depression, and stress emotional thermometers measured against the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale anxiety and depression sub-scales (HADS-A and HADS-D), and the Cohen Perceived Stress Scale-14, respectively; in addition, the study aimed to evaluate the prevalence of these changes in women scheduled for breast biopsies.
Design. The study included 221 women who were scheduled for breast biopsies; their agesranged between28 and80 years old. They were individually evaluated using the Emotional Thermometers, the HADS-A, theHADS-D, and the PSS-14 before undergoingtheir biopsies. Data from 203 participants were analyzed.
Results. The following optimal cut-off points were obtained: 3 for the anxiety emotional thermometer (ET) (sensitivity 0.71, specificity 0.25); 3 for the depression ET (sensitivity 0.87, specificity 0.34); and 4 for the stress ET(sensitivity 0.80, specificity 0.43). According to these cut-off points, 56% of the patients exhibited anxiety, 40% exhibited depression, and 55% exhibited stress.
Conclusion. Using emotional thermometers to screen anxiety, depression, and stress is therefore recommended in the context of breast biopsies.
Keywords: emotional thermometer; breast biopsy; anxiety; depression; stress
Background. Parents have a significant impact on the formation of their children’s attitude toward health. A detailed study of this effect will allow us to devise strategies for interaction with children and directions of psychological correction of maladaptive behaviors in health issues.
Objective. To study the relationship between attitude toward healthin primary-school-age children and their parents and styles of childrearing.
Design. The study comprised 69 primary-school-aged children and their parents. The method of “Unfinished Sentences About Health” and the questionnaire “Analysis of Family Relationships” were used.Components of attitude toward healthsuch as health self-esteem, assessment of healthy people, diseases, health promotion actions, health promotion factors (causes), and the value of health were considered.
Results. The findings showed that the parents’ components of attitude toward healthare interrelated with those in children’s at all levels (from behavioral to semantic and axiological) and are connected with the style of childrearing.
Conclusion. Data analysis showed the impact of the style of childrearing and the interrelation of certain parental attitude toward healthcomponents with attitude toward health in primary-school-age children. This problem requires detailed study due to its theoretical significance and the obvious social challenges it presents.
1. These are not Results, but part of the Design.
Keywords: health psychology; attitude toward health; children’s health; family relationships; childrearing
Background. Studies have shown that teaching children and youths chess can contribute to their academic achievements and improve their cognitive abilities. Recent studies further indicate the transfer of chess skills to subjects such as mathematics. However, the literature does not address the possible benefits of chess to link between inhibition and ADHD, a disorder in the operational executive functioning system, whenwith chess ias a game that requires various cognitive abilities, and is considered dependent on executive operational functioning abilities and especially inhibition.
Objective. To investigate whether chess experience relates to inhibitory control in teenagers with and without ADHD.
Design. Participants completed a visual-spatial task designed for the pur- pose of the study, comprising two conditions: In the “free” condition, par- ticipants were allowed to test different solutions before choosing the answer, whereas in the “touch-move” condition they were asked to choose the answer without any physical attempts. Participants also completed “Go/No-go” tasks.
Results. The new task was found to be partially effective as only the “touch- move” condition produced group differences, with chess players performing better than non-chess players, regardless of diagnosis. The No-go task perfor- mance analysis also showed a significant main effect for chess training, and a significant interaction among chess, ADHD, and medicine use.
Conclusion. Although not establishing causality, these results indicate that chess players were less impulsive than non-chess players, regardless of diagnosis.
Keywords: ADHD; inhibitory control; executive function; impulsivity; education; chess
Background. This survey article reviews research and academic writings analyzing cognitive features of patients with cardiovascular diseases.
Objective. To review the academic literature on the feasibility of psychological rehabilitation of cardiovascular patients by correcting cognitive impairment.
Method. Analysis and compilation of academic writings by Russian and foreign researchers.
Results. The cognitive dimension of coronary heart disease (CHD) patients has a number of features linked to the effect of their disease, and to their cognitive and psychological status. The article presents diagnostic techniques used to assess the patient’s cognitive state. The experimental data demonstrates the effectiveness of cognitive training with cardiovascular patients. The article also describes recommendations for cognitive rehabilitation of coronary heart disease patients, for choosing the right “target” of remedial psychological intervention, and for assessment of the recovery process.
Conclusion. Rehabilitation programs are promising for patients with coronary heart disease and other somatic diseases.
Keywords: psychological rehabilitation, cognition, remedial psychological training, cardiovascular disease, psychological-pedagogical process, neuropsychology
Background: Cancer incidence and mortality in young Latin American women has increased over the last few decades. In Mexico, breast self-examination (BSE) is recommended from 20 years of age to create awareness of breast cancer and detect body changes. The health belief model (HBM) allows us to identify young women’s beliefs about cancer and BSE, which could help us to design more appropriate strategies to promote BSE in the fight against breast cancer.
Objective: To assess the knowledge, practice, and beliefs about cancer and BSE in female college students; examine the differences between those who practice BSE and those who do not; and determine the most influential variable for performing BSE.
Design: A descriptive cross-sectional design was used; the Health Belief Model scale for BSE was applied to 949 female college students from a public university.
Results: Major health study field suffered benign breast disease and having a family history of breast cancer was associated with BSE performance; also the dimensions of the health beliefs model such as barriers, benefits, self-efficacy and health motivation were different between women who perform an BSE in. The predicting variables for BSE practice were self-efficacy, the barriers perceived, benign breast disease, and the major subject of study.
Conclusion: Reports of BSE practice in female students from Latin American countries are similar; however, the predictive variables differ from those found in the general population. Perceived barriers and self-efficacy are factors capable of modification, and must be addressed by BSE promotion strategies aimed at female college students.
Keywords: breast self-examination (BSE); breast cancer; cancer education; health belief model (HBM); college student health
Background. Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a lifelong pervasive developmental disorder affecting subjects’ emotions, will, and cognition, and inhibiting their social adaptation.
Objective. To define directions and methods for psychological assistance to autistic people that would let them achieve higher self-actualization and independence, and avoid social maladaptation.
Design. The following methods were used: analysis of the life histories and catamneses of autistic individuals; participant observation of their behavior; analysis of materials (text summaries) of psychological consulting with families who have autistic members; analysis of materials from remedial sessions with people with autism and developmental disorders.
Research participants were autistic individuals age 12 years or more at the beginning and up to 38–40 years at the end.
Results. The long-term manifestations of autistic development in emotions, will, and cognition are described. These manifestations affect subjects’ adaptation and independence negatively, even in cases of remarkable progress.
Two important aspects of psychological assistance are: a) mastering of skills; b) improving comprehension of social relationships, one’s own psychological world, and other people’s minds. The author proposes some methods of psychological remedial work and insists that rules for social interaction should not be learned mechanically.
Conclusions. The general principles of psychological assistance to autistic individuals are: (a) encouraging their long-term activity jointly with others; (b) providing a well-organized and thoughtful social environment where the activity takes place. Autistic persons often need special assistance to become successfully engaged in a more active and more complex social environment. The present work may be useful for professionals working with people with special needs.
Keywords: ASD (autism spectrum disorder); qualitative longitudinal search; social maladaptation; social environment; psychological remediation
Background. Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative illness, which occurs with increasing frequency as people age. While progressive memory impairment is the upfront element associated with the disease, other neurocognitive troubles are also associated with it, such as language impairment which can degenerate into aphasia. Language disorders interfere and worsen the functioning of memory.
Aim of the study. To evaluate semantic and textual impairment in AD patients.
Methods. The current study involved 151 AD patients undergong consultation at Brest University Hospital. Certain socio-demographic data (sex, age, cultural levels) were collected, as well as results from the following neuropsychological tests: Folstein (MMSE); Dubois’s 5-word test; Dubois’s frontal assessment test battery (fluencies); Cornell’s scale for depression; and Barbizet’s test ( “The Lion’s tale”). All were subject to textual analysis. Our sample of demented patients included 102 females and 49 males of average age 80.3 ± 6.91.
Results. All the tests, including the number of items recalled much later in the Barbizet’s test, showed impairment, all the more by Folstein’s test being altered. The demented patients’ formal fluency was less impaired than their semantical lexical fluency (scored respectively 5.74 ± 1.09 versus 4.41 ± 2.19; t = 5.60, p < 0.01). The demented cohort exhibited more intrusions (n = 36) than inversions in the delayed recollection of the Lion’s Tale, both for items and the episodes in which they occurred (n = 19). The regressive PLS analysis showed that, to explain the overall scores relating to “ e Lion’s Tale”, calculated later, only attainment of lexical fluency had any notable influence (Regression coefficient CR=0.224) or, more accessorily, the cultural level (CR = 0.12).
Conclusion. AD patients’ proficiency in tests of category fluency and their cultural levels have effects on narrativity.
Keywords: Alzheimer’s Disease, semiotics, semantics, textuality