Geha Mental Health Center

Petah Tikva, Ireland

Geha Mental Health Center

Petah Tikva, Ireland

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Schwartz-Lifshitz M.,Geha Mental Health Center | Zalsman G.,Geha Mental Health Center | Zalsman G.,Tel Aviv University | Giner L.,University of Seville | Oquendo M.A.,Columbia University
Current Psychiatry Reports | Year: 2012

Every year, suicide is among the top 20 leading causes of death globally for all ages. Unfortunately, suicide is difficult to prevent, in large part because the prevalence of risk factors is high among the general population. In this review, clinical and psychological risk factors are examined and methods for suicide prevention are discussed. Prevention strategies found to be effective in suicide prevention include means restriction, responsible media coverage, and general public education, as well identification methods such as screening, gatekeeper training, and primary care physician education. Although the treatment for preventing suicide is difficult, follow-up that includes pharmacotherapy, psychotherapy, or both may be useful. However, prevention methods cannot be restricted to the individual. Community, social, and policy interventions will also be essential. © Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012.


Amitai M.,Geha Mental Health Center
Harefuah | Year: 2012

Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) include several clinically different disorders. Despite the impression that in recent years there has been a rise in the incidence of this disorder, it seems that the apparent rise stems from the widening of diagnostic criteria rather than from a true rise in disorder incidence. Notwithstanding the wide range of clinical symptoms, reliabLe information on the etiology of this disorder is lacking. However, new data points to an important genetic component and to structural changes in the brain. There is a wide range of comorbidities with additional neurodevelopmental disorders. The currently offered treatment is multi-disciplinary and includes primarily behavioral therapy and symptomatic treatment with psychotropic drugs.


Barak Y.,Tel Aviv University | Barak Y.,Abarbanel Mental Health Center | Aizenberg D.,Tel Aviv University | Aizenberg D.,Geha Mental Health Center
BMC Psychiatry | Year: 2012

Background: Clinical and psychosocial remission amongst persons with schizophrenia is nowadays a defined goal of treatment. This necessitates incorporating quantifiable psychosocial variables with traditional symptomatic data. We aimed to assess clinical and psychosocial remission in schizophrenia in a large cohort of community dwelling persons with schizophrenia. We emphasized between-groups comparison of antipsychotic medications and administration methods on the outcome of remission.Methods: Psychiatric case managers rated psychosocial remission using the PsychoSocial Remission Scale (PSRS) and clinical remission using the Remission in Schizophrenia Working Group symptomatic remission criteria (RSWG). Ratings were performed for persons with schizophrenia they have been treating for 6 months or more. Data as to gender, age and pharmacological treatment of each patient were also collected.Results: Of 445 participants who completed the survey, 268 (60%) were evaluated by psychiatrists, 161 (36%) by nurses and 16 (4%) were evaluated by social workers. Patients mean age was 43.4 + 13.1 years; 61% were men and 39% were women. Antipsychotic treatments were as follows: Per-os (PO) 243 (55%), IM long-acting typical antipsychotics (LAT) 102 (23%) and IM long-acting risperidone (RLAI; Consta) 100 (22%). Overall, 37% of patients achieved symptomatic remission and 31% achieved psychosocial remission. Rates of symptomatic remission were significantly higher in patients treated by LAT and RLAI compared with PO (51% and 48% vs., 29% respectively, p = 0.0003). Rates of psychosocial remission were also significantly higher in patients treated by LAT and RLAI compared with PO (43%% and 41% vs., 24% respectively, p = 0.003).Conclusion: In a large national sample a third of persons with schizophrenia were in remission. IM long acting preparations were associated with higher remission rates. Treatment choice may thus influence rates of remission in persons with schizophrenia. © 2012 Barak and Aizenberg; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


Amit B.H.,Geha Mental Health Center | Amit B.H.,Tel Aviv University | Weizman A.,Geha Mental Health Center | Weizman A.,Tel Aviv University
Depression Research and Treatment | Year: 2012

While studies in the past have focused more on treatment of the manic phase of bipolar disorder (BD), recent findings demonstrate the depressive phase to be at least as debilitating. However, in contrast to unipolar depression, depression in bipolar patients exhibits a varying response to antidepressants, raising questions regarding their efficacy and tolerability. Methods. We conducted a MEDLINE and Cochrane Collaboration Library search for papers published between 2005 and 2011 on the subject of antidepressant treatment of bipolar depression. Sixty-eight articles were included in the present review. Results. While a few studies did advocate the use of antidepressants, most well-controlled studies failed to show a robust effect of antidepressants in bipolar depression, regardless of antidepressant class or bipolar subtype. There was no significant increase in the rate of manic/hypomanic switch, especially with concurrent use of mood stabilizers. Prescribing guidelines published in recent years rely more on atypical antipsychotics, especially quetiapine, as a first-line therapy. Conclusions. Antidepressants probably have no substantial role in acute bipolar depression. However, in light of conflicting results between studies, more well-designed trials are warranted. © 2012 Ben H. Amit and Abraham Weizman.


Hochman E.,Geha Mental Health Center
The Journal of clinical psychiatry | Year: 2014

About 45% of civilians who died by suicide had contact with a doctor within 1 month of death. Thus, educating primary care physicians (PCP) to detect and mitigate depression is an important suicide-prevention strategy. However, the PCP consulting rate before suicide has not been examined in a military population. We investigated the utilization of primary health care and mental health services by active-duty military personnel suicide cases prior to death in comparison to matched military controls. All suicides (N = 170) were extracted from a cohort of all active-duty Israeli military male personnel between 2002 and 2012. Applying a retrospective, nested case-control design, we compared primary care services utilization by suicide cases with demographic and occupationally matched military controls (N = 500). Whereas 38.3% of suicide cases contacted a PCP within the last month before death, only 27.6% of suicide cases contacted a mental health specialist during their entire service time. The PCP contact rate within 1 month before death or index day did not differ between suicide cases and military controls (38.3% vs. 33.8%, χ2 1 = 1.05, P = .3). More suicide cases contacted a mental health specialist within service time than did military controls (27.6% vs. 13.6%, χ2 1 = 10.85, P = .001). Even though PCP contact rate by military personnel who died by suicide is slightly lower than that reported for civilians who died by suicide prior to their death, it is higher than mental health specialist contact rate and higher than that by age-matched civilians who died by suicide. These results imply that PCPs education is a viable approach to suicide prevention in a military setting. © Copyright 2014 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.


Manor I.,Geha Mental Health Center | Rubin J.,Alcobra Inc. | Daniely Y.,Alcobra Ltd. | Adler L.A.,New York University
Postgraduate Medicine | Year: 2014

Objective: To assess the first-dose effectiveness and tolerability of metadoxine extended release (MDX) in adults with predominantly inattentive attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD-PI). Methods: In this double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study, adults with ADHD-PI were randomized 1:1:1 to receive a single dose of MDX 1400 mg, MDX 700 mg, and placebo (ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT01685281). The primary efficacy end point was the mean change in the Test of Variables of Attention (TOVA) ADHD score from baseline to 3 to 5 hours after drug administration. Secondary assessments included TOVA subscores, TOVA response rates (defined as an increase of 0.8 points in the TOVA ADHD score), and the Cambridge Neuropsychological Automated Test Battery. Safety assessments included adverse events and vital signs. Results: The intention-to-treat population included 36 patients (52.8% men; mean age, 32 years). The efficacy of MDX 1400 mg was demonstrated by a statistically significant difference in the mean (± SD) change in the TOVA ADHD score at baseline to 3 to 5 hours after drug administration compared with placebo (2.0 [4.2]; P = 0.009). The TOVA response time variability subscore was significantly different between MDX 1400 mg and placebo (mean difference, 7.9 [19.2] points; P = 0.022). Significantly more adults responded to single-dose MDX 1400 mg versus placebo (97.1% vs 71.4%, P = 0.006). There were no statistically significant differences between MDX 700 mg and placebo on any measures. Exploratory analyses of the Cambridge Neuropsychological Automated Test Battery did not yield significant findings. Fatigue and headache were the 2 most frequently reported adverse events. There were no clinically significant abnormalities in laboratory values, vital signs measurements, Columbia–Suicide Severity Rating Scale scores, or electrocardiographic parameters. Conclusions: Single-dose MDX 1400 mg significantly improved sustained and selective attention in adults with ADHD-PI as measured by the TOVA ADHD score 3 to 5 hours after drug administration. Single doses of MDX 700 and 1400 mg were well tolerated. © Postgraduate Medicine.


To compare the effects of metadoxine extended release (ER) with those of placebo on inattentive (IA) versus hyperactive-impulsive (H-I) symptoms and predominantly inattentive (PI) versus combined type (CT) subtype in adults with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). This was a 1:1 randomized, double-blind, parallel-design study of metadoxine ER 1400 mg/day for 6 weeks in 120 adults with ADHD. Efficacy measures were baseline to end-of-treatment changes in Conners' Adult ADHD Rating Scale-Investigator Rated (CAARS-INV) Total ADHD Symptoms scores with adult ADHD prompts, the Test of Variables of Attention ADHD scores, and response rates (≥ 25% or ≥ 40% improvement in CAARS-INV Total ADHD Symptoms score). Results: There was a significant decrease in CAARS-INV Total ADHD Symptoms scores in patients with ADHD-PI taking metadoxine ER (40%) compared with those taking placebo (21%) (P < 0.05), while the decrease for patients with ADHD-CT was not significant (27% vs 26%). Similarly, there was a significant decrease in IA scores in patients with ADHD-PI (metadoxine ER, 50% vs placebo, 23%; P < 0.005), while the change in patients with ADHD-CT was not significant. There was no significant difference in percent decreases seen in H-I scores for patients with PI or ADHD-CT. Significantly higher response rates at both cutoffs (ie, 25% and 45% improvement) were seen in the metadoxine ER group compared with the placebo group in CAARS-INV Total ADHD Symptoms scores in patients with ADHD-PI, but not those with ADHD-CT. Test of Variables of Attention ADHD scores were significantly decreased in the metadoxine ER group compared with the placebo group for patients with ADHD-PI, but not those with ADHD-CT. These data suggest that metadoxine ER is selectively efficacious for treating IA symptoms in adults with ADHD-PI. Trial registration: www.ClinicalTrials.gov identifier NCT01243242.


Schlossberg K.,Geha Mental Health Center
The Israel journal of psychiatry and related sciences | Year: 2010

In the past all psychopathologies were viewed as caused by the environment. Later on case-control and family-based studies of major psychiatric disorders found genetic associations, but in many cases these findings did not survive replications. A gene-environment approach gave new hope for possible associations. Gene environment correlations emphasized that the relationship are bidirectional. However, recent meta-analyses raised doubts about the consistency of these findings as well. The review summarizes the current view on the environmental factors in the major psychopathologies.


Barak Y.,Abarbanel Mental Health Center | Barak Y.,Tel Aviv University | Aizenberg D.,Tel Aviv University | Aizenberg D.,Geha Mental Health Center
Expert Review of Neurotherapeutics | Year: 2010

The prevention of dementia, and particularly of Alzheimers disease, is a major challenge for researchers and clinicians. In this article, the mixture of evidence, observations and hypotheses in the current literature is categorized into four avenues for possible preventive interventions, as suggested by the NIH State-of-the-Science Conference. The main categories are: antihypertensive medications; nutrition; cognitive engagement; and physical activity. There is, as yet, no conclusive evidence, but each category may hold promise for the prevention of dementia. The robust findings are as follows: cognitive engagement and regular physical activity may reduce the risk of Alzheimers disease; the Mediterranean diet and consumption of omega-3 fatty acids deserves further elucidation; and the meticulous management of risk factors, and especially hypertension, is the infrastructure of Alzheimers disease prevention. © 2010 Expert Reviews Ltd.


Amitai M.,Geha Mental Health Center | Amitai M.,Tel Aviv University | Apter A.,Tel Aviv University | Apter A.,The Feinberg Child Study Center
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health | Year: 2012

Purpose: The present review summarizes the updated literature on the social aspects of suicidal behavior and prevention in adolescents. Recent findings: The predictive role of psychiatric disorders and past history are well recognized in adolescent suicide, but the role of social and cultural factors is less clear. Studies have focused on the importance of ethnicity, gender, family characteristics, and socioeconomic status. More recently, attention has been addressed to broader social risk factors, such as bullying in adolescents, suicide contagion, sexual orientation, and the popular media. Further empirical evidence is needed to advance our understanding of suicidal youth, develop better assessment tools, and formulate effective prevention and treatment programs. Summary: Suicidal behavior remains an important clinical problem and major cause of death in youth. Social factors may be at least as important as genetics. Advancing our understanding of underlying cultural and sociological issues in youth suicide will help clinicians achieve more efficient prediction, prevention and treatment. © 2012 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

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