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Dr. Hsu Li Yang, Dr. Tan Thuan Tong, Dr. Andrea Kwa, 08 Jan 2021
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Pearl Toh, 26 Nov 2020
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Alopecia areata bidirectionally linked to major depressive disorder

21 Apr 2020

A bidirectional association exists between alopecia areata (AA) and major depressive disorder (MDD) among probands and unaffected siblings, reveals a study. This suggests that shared familial mechanisms tend to cause AA and MDD.

This study recruited participants from the National Health Insurance Research Database in Taiwan. A total of 2,123 probands with AA, 2,298 unaffected siblings and 9,192 matched controls were included to examine the risk of MDD. To assess the risk of AA, the authors included 16,543 probands with MDD, 17,352 unaffected siblings and 69,408 matched controls. The adjusted relative risk was calculated using the Breslow-Cox model.

The unadjusted relative risks for MDD were 8.22 (95 percent confidence interval [CI], 6.41–10.54) with AA probands and 2.55 (95 percent CI, 1.91–3.40) with unaffected siblings compared with matched controls. For AA, the unadjusted relative risks were 1.66 (95 percent CI, 1.24–2.22) with MDD probands and 1.64 (95 percent CI, 1.27–2.12) with unaffected siblings.

These findings are consistent with those of a recent study, which found that while patients with AA were at risk for developing MDD, having MDD also increased the risk for developing AA. [JAMA Dermatol 2019;155:475-479]

The current study, however, had certain limitations. Chief of which was the lack of data from the National Health Insurance Research Database on disease severity, body mass index, smoking habits, alcohol consumption and stressful life events.

“AA has long been associated with MDD,” according to the authors. “However, most evidence to date has derived from cross-sectional or case-control studies.”

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Most Read Articles
4 days ago
Among postmenopausal women, short sleep duration and depression contribute to increased fall accidents, as reported in a study.
01 Dec 2020
Tetanus toxoid 5 Lf, diphtheria toxoid 2 Lf, pertussis toxoid 2.5 mcg, filamentous haemagglutinin 5 mcg, fimbriae types 2 and 3 5 mcg, pertactin 3 mcg
Dr. Hsu Li Yang, Dr. Tan Thuan Tong, Dr. Andrea Kwa, 08 Jan 2021
Antimicrobial resistance has become increasingly dire as the rapid emergence of drug resistance, especially gram-negative pathogens, has outpaced the development of new antibiotics. At a recent virtual symposium, Dr Hsu Li Yang, Vice Dean (Global Health) and Programme Leader (Infectious Diseases), NUS Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health, presented epidemiological data on multidrug-resistant (MDR) gram-negative bacteria (GNB) in Asia, while Dr Tan Thuan Tong, Head and Senior Consultant, Department of Infectious Diseases, Singapore General Hospital (SGH), focused on the role of ceftazidime-avibactam in MDR GNB infections. Dr Andrea Kwa, Assistant Director of Research, Department of Pharmacy, SGH, joined the panel in an interactive fireside chat, to discuss challenges, practical considerations, and solutions in MDR gram-negative infections. This Pfizer-sponsored symposium was chaired by Dr Ng Shin Yi, Head and Senior Consultant of Surgical Intensive Care, SGH.
Pearl Toh, 26 Nov 2020
Inhaled corticosteroid (ICS) should be the mainstay of long-term asthma management — such is the key message of the latest Singapore ACE* Clinical Guidance (ACG) for asthma, released in October 2020.