Saturday March 23, 2019

Physical abuse highest in infants younger than one year

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source: angelsinnature.wordpress.com

London:  A study revealed that among children who endure physical abuse, it is the infants less than a year old, who bear the highest risk of physical abuse.

According to researchers, their age coupled with the magnitude of the injuries creates a situation where they are three times more at death risk than children who have been through any other trauma.

The TARN database helped scientists reach this conclusion. TARN keeps a record of patients who received three days or more of hospital treatment to address their serious physical injuries.

About 16,000 such cases involving children under 16 cropped up from the time period of 2004-2013.

The database from 2012 showed significantly more number of cases of deliberate physical abuse in infants and very young children.

The data had categories separating injuries caused accidentally, suspected child abuse, and cases of alleged assault, which also housed injuries from fights.

In almost all the cases in which abuse was suspected, the children were aged below five. Three-fourth of that number were aged even less than 12 months.

“The injuries of abused children were more severe and tended to involve the head/brain,” noted the authors of the study published in the Emergency Medicine Journal.

Injuries caused by accident more than often affected the limbs while supposed assaults involved the torso.

Injuries are the cause of death for a relatively small children population but for those who were abused, the risks increased to three times.

Researchers noted that the cause might be, that as the children grew up and developed a more robust body, they were more resistant to injuries. So, it would be difficult to inflict trauma on an older child, while the same level of physical abuse might gravely harm an infant.

Next Story

Childhood Maltreatment Strongest Risk Factor for Depression in Adulthood: Lancet

The findings are to develop or improve risk-adapted interventions for people susceptible to a worse long-term clinical outcome

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Fourteen had a remission period of less than two months and could therefore be regarded as having chronic depression. Pixabay

Facing trauma in childhood can significantly change the structure of the brain, which may result in severe depression which could even be recurrent in adulthood, say researchers.

The results from MRI scan images suggest that both childhood maltreatment and recurring depression are associated with similar reductions in the surface area of the insular cortex, part of the brain that regulates emotion and self-awareness.

This reduction in the brain could make a future relapse more likely, said the study, published in The Lancet Psychiatry journal, which found childhood maltreatment one of the strongest risk factors for major depression in adulthood.

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Depression is among the leading causes of disability in the U.S. and is being closely monitored by health authorities amid rising suicides nationwide. Pixabay

“Given the impact of the insular cortex on brain functions such as emotional awareness, it’s possible that the changes we saw make patients less responsive to conventional treatments,” said lead researcher Nils Opel from the University of Munster in Germany.

The study included 110 patients aged 18 to 60 years. Of the 75 patients who experienced a relapse, 48 had experienced one additional episode, seven reported two episodes, and six experienced three episodes.

Fourteen had a remission period of less than two months and could therefore be regarded as having chronic depression.

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This reduction in the brain could make a future relapse more likely, said the study, published in The Lancet Psychiatry journal. Pixabay

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The findings are to develop or improve risk-adapted interventions for people susceptible to a worse long-term clinical outcome.

Future psychiatric research should therefore explore how the findings could be translated into special attention, care and treatment that could improve patient outcomes, the study noted. (IANS)