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Post Info TOPIC: Keratoconus patients are more likely to have psychiatric disorders, study shows


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Date: Sun Sep 16 4:50 AM, 2007
Keratoconus patients are more likely to have psychiatric disorders, study shows
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I stumbled upon this article by sheer coincedence today. It doesn't sound very nice but apprarently the study quoted here seems to sugest there could be a connection between KC and mental health.

I am wondering now, could this put us KC sufferers at the risk of being stigmatized? As if the problems of KC alone aren't enough!!

Below is the text of the article and here is the link to it:
http://www.osnsupersite.com/view.asp?rID=21758

OSN SuperSite Breaking News 5/3/2007

Keratoconus patients are more likely to have psychiatric disorders, study shows


SAN DEIGO — Patients with keratoconus are significantly more likely to have mental disorders than patients without the condition, according to a surgeon speaking here.

At the American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery meeting, Armando Signorelli, MD, presented the results of a study investigating behavioral disturbances in keratoconic patients.

"Over the course of the years of clinical and surgical follow-up of patients with keratoconus, we have observed that patients demonstrated peculiar behavior ranging from emotional instability to diagnostic schizophrenia," Dr. Signorelli said. "We reviewed the literature and found isolated reports, some describing a keratoconus personality in patients, though without a more detailed statistical study."

Dr. Signorelli and colleagues administered the adult psychiatric morbidity questionnaire, a widely used mental health survey, to 100 keratoconic patients and 100 non-keratoconic controls. They found significantly more keratoconic patients had mental disorders: 35% vs. 22% of controls (P < .042), he said. Significantly more keratoconic patients also had experienced aggression (46%), sadness (49%) and suicidal thoughts (19%), he added.

Additionally, the researchers found a significantly higher incidence of mental disorders among women with keratoconus, 48% compared with 25% of women in the control group (P = .037), Dr. Signorelli said.

"The construction of a more specific questionnaire would most likely identify the behaviors directly relative to keratoconus," he said. Such research could lead to a "holistic view" of keratoconus patients, including multidisciplinary treatment and stronger, more consistent physician-family support, he noted.



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Date: Sun Sep 16 8:01 PM, 2007
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The sample is small, done in one place, the results was marginal, it was done using a questionaire of all things? The way KC is managed (or not as the case may be) can put people at their breaking point... create fustration, stress, worry etc effecting there well being when KC usually effects young people more, so they have had years more of this torture when it should have been the best years of their lifes.

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Date: Mon Sep 17 4:34 PM, 2007
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bluesfan i've read this artical also and agree with you that it could stigmatise us kc'ers, maybe it's been published as an excuse for those of us who are "kicking off" about the treatment to try an displace us. To be honest i think anybody who has visual problems could become depressed i don't think it's linked to kc and as kreading said it's only taken from a small sample. I'd like to see a study regarding a link between eye care specialist, kc and arrogance/ ignorance lol
all the best
tom

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Date: Sun Sep 23 1:12 AM, 2007
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Many thanks to Kreading and tommydean! a big thank you to both of you for your replies. I totally agree with all of your views.

1) you have both made an excellent good point about the nature of the survey. As someone who knows a thing or two about statistics (which can really be a science in its own right), it still surprises how still in this day in age many anecdotal studies and surveys are still given a lot of attention, even in the medical community. We need to look at the context, data sampling and other relevant variables before taking findings seriously, as this affects their integrity indeed.

2) I agree with Kreading that vision problems in gneral can become a source of stress for most people (if not all) simply because of the importance of the role of vision to humans. It becomes doubly stressful when your career and your entire lifestyle hangs on it (as my case happens to be). Although I was only diagnosed about 2 months ago, I am unfortunately in a field of work where having visual acuity that is below a certain standard can mean loosing my current job for good and having to consider other career choices. Loosing a job that you love and having to start over again from square one while not being able to earn what you used to make can all be seriously stressful! I am still hoping that I can be able to save my career.

3) Kreading has also made a good point about KC’s uniquness in that it often hits those who are young. I am a 28 year old and I can sort of relate to that! I also agree with wat Kreading said about the lack of "managing KC" indeed none of the doctors I have seen have even attempted to provide any feedback or advce on how to manage the condition. I feel the doctors are beginning to, more and more, distance themselves from such things, the focus seems to be on getting the patient in and then out of the way as quickly as possible with least information and responsibilty on the part of the doctor. I find this really distubring.

4) Tommydean made a very good point about a study regarding a link between eye care specialists, kc and arrogance/ ignorance smile.gif I can speak out pf personal experience here. The information I have received from ALMOST all the opthalmologists I have seen to date has been truly confusing to say the least (please note these are “reputable” corneal surgeons that I am referring to not just any opthalms!).I regret to say that, but, Some of these doctors insisted that crosslinking (for example) “does not exist”, while others were too arrogant to explain things or listen to me or my questions, and of course there are the doctors who simply did not show any signs of genuine concern or consideration for the patient. I always thought that doctors and all other medical workers are supposed to put care, respect and above all, sincerity, at the forefront of their work. Why do we have things like the oath of Hippocrates for heaven’s sake!!

So I agree, the lack of good eye care specialities and the amount of confusion that exists out there when it comes to treatment options and other information surrounding KC can be a real problem and source of stress.

-- Edited by bluesfan at 01:14, 2007-09-23

-- Edited by bluesfan at 01:24, 2007-09-23

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