Factors influencing tackle injuries in rugby union football.
OBJECTIVES: To assess the influence of selected aspects of lifestyle, personality, and other player related factors on injuries in the tackle. To describe the detailed circumstances in which these tackles occurred. METHODS: A prospective case-control study was undertaken in which the tackling and tackled players ("the cases") involved in a tackle injury were each matched with "control" players who held the same respective playing positions in the opposing teams. A total of 964 rugby matches involving 71 senior clubs drawn from all districts of the Scottish Rugby Union (SRU) were observed by nominated linkmen who administered self report questionnaires to the players identified as cases and controls. Information on lifestyle habits, match preparation, training, and coaching experience was obtained. A validated battery of psychological tests assessed players' trait anger and responses to anger and hostility. The circumstances of the tackles in which injury occurred were recorded by experienced SRU coaching staff in interviews with involved players after the match. RESULTS: A total of 71 tackle injury episodes with correct matching of cases and controls were studied. The following player related factors did not contribute significantly to tackle injuries: alcohol consumption before the match, feeling "below par" through minor illness, the extent of match preparation, previous coaching, or practising tackling. Injured and non-injured players in the tackle did not differ in their disposition toward, or expression of, anger or hostility. Some 85% of tackling players who were injured were three quarters, and 52% of injuries occurred when the tackle came in behind the tackled player or within his peripheral vision. Either the tackling or tackled player was sprinting or running in all of these injury episodes. One third of injuries occurred in differential speed tackles--that is, when one player was travelling much faster than the other at impact. The player with the lower momentum was injured in 80% of these cases. Forceful or crunching tackles resulting in injury mostly occurred head on or within the tackled player's side vision. CONCLUSIONS: Attention should be focused on high speed tackles going in behind the tackled player's line of vision. Comparative information on the circumstances of the vast majority of tackles in which no injury occurs is required before any changes are considered to reduce injuries in the tackle. (+info)
Cladistic association analysis of Y chromosome effects on alcohol dependence and related personality traits.
Association between Y chromosome haplotype variation and alcohol dependence and related personality traits was investigated in a large sample of psychiatrically diagnosed Finnish males. Haplotypes were constructed for 359 individuals using alleles at eight loci (seven microsatellite loci and a nucleotide substitution in the DYZ3 alphoid satellite locus). A cladogram linking the 102 observed haplotype configurations was constructed by using parsimony with a single-step mutation model. Then, a series of contingency tables nested according to the cladogram hierarchy were used to test for association between Y haplotype and alcohol dependence. Finally, using only alcohol-dependent subjects, we tested for association between Y haplotype and personality variables postulated to define subtypes of alcoholism-antisocial personality disorder, novelty seeking, harm avoidance, and reward dependence. Significant association with alcohol dependence was observed at three Y haplotype clades, with significance levels of P = 0.002, P = 0.020, and P = 0.010. Within alcohol-dependent subjects, no relationship was revealed between Y haplotype and antisocial personality disorder, novelty seeking, harm avoidance, or reward dependence. These results demonstrate, by using a fully objective association design, that differences among Y chromosomes contribute to variation in vulnerability to alcohol dependence. However, they do not demonstrate an association between Y haplotype and the personality variables thought to underlie the subtypes of alcoholism. (+info)
Functional neuropsychophysiological asymmetry in schizophrenia: a review and reorientation.
In reviewing the neuropsychophysiological evidence of functional asymmetry it is proposed that schizophrenia is characterized by a greater dispersion of leftward and rightward asymmetries. The two extremes are represented by active (left greater than right) and withdrawn (right greater than left) syndromes, as is the case with psychometric schizotypy. Syndrome-asymmetry relations extended beyond fronto-temporal systems to include posterior activity, infracortical motoneuron excitability, and individual differences in interhemispheric connectivity and directional biases. Central to these are lateral imbalances in thalamo-cortical and callosal arousal systems, while centrality to schizophrenia follows evidence of reversals in asymmetry with changes in symptom profile, clinical recovery, and neuroleptic treatment. Affinities are found in intact animals from challenge-induced turning tendencies representing coordinated activity of attentional, motor, and reinforcement systems. In both patients and animals, neuroleptics have reciprocal interhemispheric effects, with a bidirectionality that depends on syndrome or endogenous turning preference. Bidirectionality implicates nonspecific thalamic system (NSTS) and not limbic projections. It is proposed that the asymmetries arise from endogenous influences of genes, hormones, and early experience including stressors on NSTS asymmetry, and these underpin approach/withdrawal behavior that is manifested in temperament, personality, and clinical syndrome, and which precedes language development. (+info)
Beyond "compliance" is "adherence". Improving the prospect of diabetes care.
The purpose of this study is to evaluate existing research in the area of patient "compliance," to endorse reconceptualizing "compliance" in terms of "adherence," and to discuss the benefits of such a change for medical practitioners. This study critically reviews existing medical, nursing, and social scientific research in the area of patient "compliance." We assert that the literature reviewed is flawed in its focus on patient behavior as the source of "noncompliance," and neglects the roles that practitioners, the American medical system, and patient-practitioner interaction play in medical definitions of "compliance." The term "compliance" suggests a restricted medical-centered model of behavior, while the alternative "adherence" implies that patients have more autonomy in defining and following their medical treatments. We suggest that while the change in terminology is minor, it reflects an important paradigmatic shift for thinking about the delivery of health care. By enabling practitioners to more accurately identify patients' social and economic constraints and to provide them with more efficient educational and financial resources, this type of change will improve patient care. In general, by moving to a more social paradigm for understanding patient behavior, practitioners can expand the types of explanations, and therefore the types of solutions, they have for therapeutic adherence. (+info)
Level of chronic life stress predicts clinical outcome in irritable bowel syndrome.
BACKGROUND: Life stress contributes to symptom onset and exacerbation in the majority of patients with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and functional dyspepsia (FD); research evidence is conflicting, however, as to the strength of these effects. AIMS: To test prospectively the relation of chronic life stress threat to subsequent symptom intensity over time. PATIENTS: One hundred and seventeen consecutive outpatients satisfying the modified Rome criteria for IBS (66% with one or more concurrent FD syndromes) participated. METHODS: The life stress and symptom intensity measures were determined from interview data collected independently at entry, and at six and 16 months; these measures assessed the potency of chronic life stress threat during the prior six months or more, and the severity and frequency of IBS and FD symptoms during the following two weeks. RESULTS: Chronic life stress threat was a powerful predictor of subsequent symptom intensity, explaining 97% of the variance on this measure over 16 months. No patient exposed to even one chronic highly threatening stressor improved clinically (by 50%) over the 16 months; all patients who improved did so in the absence of such a stressor. CONCLUSION: The level of chronic life stress threat predicts the clinical outcome in most patients with IBS/FD. (+info)
Impact of psychological factors on the pathogenesis of cardiovascular disease and implications for therapy.
Recent studies provide clear and convincing evidence that psychosocial factors contribute significantly to the pathogenesis and expression of coronary artery disease (CAD). This evidence is composed largely of data relating CAD risk to 5 specific psychosocial domains: (1) depression, (2) anxiety, (3) personality factors and character traits, (4) social isolation, and (5) chronic life stress. Pathophysiological mechanisms underlying the relationship between these entities and CAD can be divided into behavioral mechanisms, whereby psychosocial conditions contribute to a higher frequency of adverse health behaviors, such as poor diet and smoking, and direct pathophysiological mechanisms, such as neuroendocrine and platelet activation. An extensive body of evidence from animal models (especially the cynomolgus monkey, Macaca fascicularis) reveals that chronic psychosocial stress can lead, probably via a mechanism involving excessive sympathetic nervous system activation, to exacerbation of coronary artery atherosclerosis as well as to transient endothelial dysfunction and even necrosis. Evidence from monkeys also indicates that psychosocial stress reliably induces ovarian dysfunction, hypercortisolemia, and excessive adrenergic activation in premenopausal females, leading to accelerated atherosclerosis. Also reviewed are data relating CAD to acute stress and individual differences in sympathetic nervous system responsivity. New technologies and research from animal models demonstrate that acute stress triggers myocardial ischemia, promotes arrhythmogenesis, stimulates platelet function, and increases blood viscosity through hemoconcentration. In the presence of underlying atherosclerosis (eg, in CAD patients), acute stress also causes coronary vasoconstriction. Recent data indicate that the foregoing effects result, at least in part, from the endothelial dysfunction and injury induced by acute stress. Hyperresponsivity of the sympathetic nervous system, manifested by exaggerated heart rate and blood pressure responses to psychological stimuli, is an intrinsic characteristic among some individuals. Current data link sympathetic nervous system hyperresponsivity to accelerated development of carotid atherosclerosis in human subjects and to exacerbated coronary and carotid atherosclerosis in monkeys. Thus far, intervention trials designed to reduce psychosocial stress have been limited in size and number. Specific suggestions to improve the assessment of behavioral interventions include more complete delineation of the physiological mechanisms by which such interventions might work; increased use of new, more convenient "alternative" end points for behavioral intervention trials; development of specifically targeted behavioral interventions (based on profiling of patient factors); and evaluation of previously developed models of predicting behavioral change. The importance of maximizing the efficacy of behavioral interventions is underscored by the recognition that psychosocial stresses tend to cluster together. When they do so, the resultant risk for cardiac events is often substantially elevated, equaling that associated with previously established risk factors for CAD, such as hypertension and hypercholesterolemia. (+info)
Delay or probability discounting in a model of impulsive behavior: effect of alcohol.
Little is known about the acute effects of drugs of abuse on impulsivity and self-control. In this study, impulsivity was assessed in humans using a computer task that measured delay and probability discounting. Discounting describes how much the value of a reward (or punisher) is decreased when its occurrence is either delayed or uncertain. Twenty-four healthy adult volunteers ingested a moderate dose of ethanol (0.5 or 0.8 g/kg ethanol: n = 12 at each dose) or placebo before completing the discounting task. In the task the participants were given a series of choices between a small, immediate, certain amount of money and $10 that was either delayed (0, 2, 30, 180, or 365 days) or probabilistic (i.e., certainty of receipt was 1.0, .9, .75, .5, or .25). The point at which each individual was indifferent between the smaller immediate or certain reward and the $10 delayed or probabilistic reward was identified using an adjusting-amount procedure. The results indicated that (a) delay and probability discounting were well described by a hyperbolic function; (b) delay and probability discounting were positively correlated within subjects; (c) delay and probability discounting were moderately correlated with personality measures of impulsivity; and (d) alcohol had no effect on discounting. (+info)
Health consciousness of young people in relation to their personality.
Personality of targeted individuals can be assumed to influence behavior modification by health education. In this study the influence of personality on health consciousness was analyzed by a questionnaire for lifestyle, health consciousness, and the NEO-FFI personality test. Subjects were 942 new students in the Tokyo University of Agriculture who were surveyed in April, 1998. Separately performed health examination data were used to verify reliability of answers to the questionnaire. Among students, 83.2% of males and 90.4% of females felt themselves to be healthy, and more than 80% students desired to improve their health more. The rate of having no physical complaints, however, was only 31.7% in males and 20.4% in females. Distribution of NEO-FFI scores of neuroticism (N), extraversion (E), openness (O), agreeableness (A), and conscientiousness (C) corresponded well between males and females, except for significantly higher scores of O and A in females. Odds ratios (ORs) between high and low tertial points of NEO-FFI score for health consciousness were significantly elevated in the high scoring groups of E and C (OR = 6.26, 95% CI = 1.46-26.82, and OR = 6.04, 95% CI = 1.42-25.71, respectively) in males. On the contrary, high N and O groups had low health consciousness. Smoking habit was associated with high E scores (OR = 2.24, 95% CI = 1.13-4.43). Dietary habits, regular eating time, and avoidance of salty foods were associated with high C scores in both males and females. The OR of regular eating time was 2.66 (95% CI = 1.42-1.98), and 2.20 (95% CI = 1.31-3.71) for males and females, respectively. The OR of avoidance of salty foods were 2.09 (95% CI = 1.11-3.91), 1.87 (95% CI = 1.11-3.16) for males and females, respectively. Significant associations between lifestyle and personality require further study for risk association analysis and for relationship to interventive practices for prevention of lifestyle associated diseases. (+info)