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Changes in body perception caused by mental illness on the basis of Great Thoughts of Nervous Patient by Daniel Paul Schreber

Abstract

The article presents a study on delusory changes in perceiving one’s own body in a patient with mental illness. The story of Daniel Paul Schreber is an example of strongly experienced delusions, which, in the described form are contemporarily attributed to schizophrenia. This story, coming from over one hundred years ago, is still vivid, and actualizes the image of mental illness and suffering connected with it in the thoughts of the reader. The author presents these characteristics focusing mainly on the symptoms of dysmorphognosia or dysmorphophobia, which became an important element of delusional constructs. He describes the nature of the experienced symptoms in detail, documenting them with extensive quotations from „Diary of a mental patient” written by such patient. The study of mental illness presented in the paper reveals the meanders of distorted psyche and some changes that are happening in it under the influence of delusions. It is a study undertaking the issue of describing and understanding the symptoms of mental disorders.

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Functioning of a family with a child suffering from cystic fibrosis and short bowel syndrome - case study

Abstract

This article presents the problem of the functioning of a family with a child suffering from two painful, chronic and incurable diseases - cystic fibrosis and short bowel syndrome. Its aim is to learn about the impact of these diseases on the occurrence and course of mental disorders in a child and on the functioning of the whole family in which such a child is brought up. Like any long-term illness of a child, it has influenced changes in the functioning of the family system. The parents’ functioning and the flexibility of the family system conditioned the acceptance of the diagnosis and determined further participation of the family in the treatment process. This article also discusses the risk of unfavorable attitudes of parents towards the child’s illnesses, which may contribute to the development of mental disorders in the child patient, as well as in his/her parents or siblings. In the process of treatment and rehabilitation, the necessity for cooperation of medical staff, the patient and his/her parents has been emphasised.

Open access
Neurotic symptoms in clinical practice: Mieczysław Kaczyński’s approach

Abstract

The aim of this study is to acquaint the readers with some pieces of practical guidance on the therapy of neurotic disorders offered by Professor Mieczysław Kaczyński to his colleagues and students at the Lublin Clinic of Psychiatry. Patients who report so-called neurotic complaints are a group that requires a very thorough clinical analysis. Professor Kaczyński emphasized that it was necessary to make a distinction among patients with a neurotic reaction, a pseudoneurotic syndrome, and ‘neurosis proper’ or psychoneurosis. The first group includes patients who report a psychological trauma as a trigger of their complaints. Therapeutic intervention brings good outcomes leading to resolution of the condition. A group of patients that is very important from the point of view of diagnosis are those in whom neurotic complaints are masking an onset of a somatic or mental illness or an existing illness which is running a mild course. In such cases, a cursory examination leading to a mistaken diagnosis of neurosis can have devastating effects. A misdiagnosis is easy to make, for example, in patients with increased intracranial pressure (“the neurasthenic stage of a brain tumour”) or an onset of a mental illness (the pseudoneurotic syndrome of early schizophrenia). Therefore, often, before the final diagnosis is arrived at, multiple follow-up examinations are needed to monitor the structure and dynamics of the disease. Only when the first two diagnostic options have been excluded, can the physician classify the disorder as a neurosis (psychoneurosis). In such cases, it is necessary to find the etiological agent, which, more often than not, is a situation of conflict or frustration that the patient is unconscious of. A failure to analyze a case in this way may result in the patient’s resignation response, potentially leading to suicide. It appears that Professor Kaczyński’s remarks on the clinical picture of neurotic disorders largely round out the information provided in ICD-10 under F.40–F.48.

Open access
An overlooked issue: sexual dysfunctions in men addicted to alcohol

Abstract

Introduction According to the data obtained in the EZOP Poland study (2015), the prevalence of alcohol dependence in lifetime in Poland amounts to about 2.2% of the population, entailing enormous social, family and personal harm, including health damage. It is estimated that about 72% of alcohol-dependent patients complain about one or more problems related to the sexual sphere, which may result from both the development of somatic complications in the course of alcohol dependence, and from psychiatric complications that themselves can lead to sexual dysfunction. There are reports and clinical observations indicating that the occurrence of sexual dysfunction (SD) can affect the shortening or interruption of the period of abstinence.

Aim The aim of this work is to show sexual dysfunctions in alcohol-dependent men and to discuss the factors that may affect the occurrence of the above-mentioned dysfunctions.

Material and methods The available literature was reviewed using Medline, Google Scholar and ScienceDirect browsers by entering the keywords: alcohol dependence, sexual dysfunction, comorbidity, alcohol-caused diseases and time descriptors: 1979-2016.

Results

• Alcohol dependence is associated with the occurrence of various types of sexual dysfunctions (SD).

• The diagnosis of SD should take into account all possible causes that may lead to the development of SD in this group of patients, including the comorbidity of somatic diseases or the negative impact of drugs on sexual function.

• Occurrence of SD is connected with a higher risk of abstinence interruption.

• There is a need to carry out more research in order to better understand the relationship between alcohol dependence and the prevalence of sexual dysfunctions.

Open access
A Psycholexical Classification of Ukrainian Descriptors of Individual Differences

Abstract

The aim of the psycholexical study was to classify the terms describing individual differences in the Ukrainian language.

Method. To accomplish this objective, we analysed 220,000 entries included in a universal dictionary of Ukrainian and identified 20,024 terms – adjectives, participles, type-nouns, and attribute-nouns – used to describe human characteristics. The identified person-descriptive terms were classified by a team of five trained judges into 13 categories and subcategories. The judges’ taxonomic decisions were tested for validity and interjudge agreement.

Results. This procedure yielded lists of Ukrainian personality descriptors, consisting, respectively, of 2,426 adjectives, 2,255 participles, 1,653 attribute-nouns, and 1,474 type-nouns. The analysis of semantic redundancy of terms representing different parts of speech but having the same common morpheme among dispositional descriptors identified a total of 1,634 morphemes that differed in terms of meaning. The analysis identified 212 (22.0% of morphemes) type-nouns that could not be replaced by any different part of speech with the same morpheme to describe the same personality trait.

Conclusions. Ukrainian personality lexicon has a comparable or higher diversity of personality-descriptive vocabulary, attested to by the presence of 96% Big Factors markers from international comparative analyses of psycholexical structures of natural languages. The results of the study contribute to the debate on universals in the description of individual differences and constitute the basis for future questionnaire-based studies aimed at identifying the psycholexical structure of the Ukrainian language.

Open access
The dynamics of structural changes in the social-role attitudes of students during studies at higher educational institution

Abstract

The purpose of the paper — to present the theoretical considerations and the results of empirical study concerning on the intentional characteristics of professional consciousness (on the example of social-role attitudes of students). The structure, the dynamics of changes in the social-role attitudes of students during studies at higher educational institution in different forms of studies (full-time and part-time) and the influence of the quality of program content transferred during the education process on the shaping of students' professional awareness were also discussed.

The methodology of the research. We used the method of questioning and incomplete sentences in the research. The sample consisted of 94 students of 1 - 5 courses in the following fields: psychology, primary education, mathematics and physics. The study involved 17 part-time students and 77 full-time students. The age of full-time students was from 17 to 22 years old, and the age of part-time students was from 24 to 35 years old. Methods of mathematical statistics are used to evaluate the data.

The results of the research. The data of the empirical research of the students' social-role attitudes show that they have content peculiarities as for the specifics of manifestation at different stages of professional training and on different forms of studies at higher educational institution. Social attitudes regarding the role of “student” and the role of “professional” which have three-component structure (cognitive, emotional and behavioural) vary in degree of awareness and completeness, and are ambivalent. This increases their resilience to changes.

The discussion. The results of the studies show that the social-role attitudes undergo changes as a result of target influences in the process of professional training of future specialists at higher educational institution. Therefore, the definition of social-role attitudes features will contribute to the development of the effective technologies in the professional training of specialists.

Open access
Eveningness and its possibility of predicting burnout symptoms among physicians and nurses – preliminary results

Abstract

Introduction.

A sense of burnout may seriously impair one’s functioning and well-being. It may also hamper the quality of care over a patient. The present study therefore assesses sleep quality and chronotype as predictors of a sense of burnout in physicians and nurses of a district hospital.

Material and methods.

The study group comprised 16 physicians and 31 nurses of a district hospital in Central Poland. The participants completed the Link Burnout Questionnaire (LBQ), Chronotype Questionnaire, and Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Inventory. A linear regression model was constructed for each LBQ dimension by means of stepwise elimination. Each model was adjusted to empirical data (p<0.05).

Results.

A rise in Psychophysical exhaustion was predicted by greater scores for Morningness-Eveningness (ME) and Distinctness (DI) of the rhythm. A higher ME score was associated with higher scores in Relationship deterioration and Sense of professional ineffectiveness, with the latter also associated with presence in the nurses group. The nurses group also demonstrated higher Disillusionment and Psychophysical exhaustion scores than the physicians group.

Conclusions.

Eveningness predicted greater burnout in the studied sample. Thus, chronotype should be considered an important burnout risk factor and it can act as a starting point for devising behavioural interventions.

Open access
Executive functions and memory in patients at risk of vascular brain pathology

Abstract

Hypertension is a common problem in the elderly population. It is one of the factors determining the pattern of cognitive functioning of the patients, however the nature and severity of neuropsychological deficits are unclear. The main aim of the study was to assess effectiveness of cognitive task performance and the strategies of verbal material organization in patients with varying levels of productivity and control. The outpatients treated for hypertension (n = 46) were tested with the following neuropsychological tests and the experimental task: Ruff Figural Fluency Test (RFFT), California Verbal Learning Test (CVLT), Semantic Verbal Fluency Task (VF). The level of productivity and control in older hypertensive patients appeared to be important variables differentiating the effectiveness of structured task performance involving the memory and learning of verbal material. Patients with weaker productivity and control show less efficiency in formulating and sustaining a learning plan expressed by the compatibility of responses in subsequent attempts. Weaker productivity and control are associated with high risk of memory problems, especially in situations characterized by a high degree of structure. It is advisable to include an evaluation of certain aspects of executive functions at the initial stage of assessment of patients at risk of brain dysfunction.

Open access
Intrapersonal conflicts of bloggers: psychological perspective

Abstract

Aim.

The aim of the study was to establish depth and substantive characteristics of intrapersonal conflicts of bloggers. Internal conflicts were analyzed at the levels of individual typological characteristics, self-conception, and value orientation of personality.

Research methodology.

The study was based on the method of content analysis and psychodiagnostic tests. 100 respondents (50 respondents who have blogs and 50 respondents who do not have blogs) were examined with Sobczyk’s individual typological questionnaire, Stephenson’s Q sorting, Budassi’s scale of self-assessment, Leary’s interpersonal diagnosis of personality, Fantalova’s value / accessibility correlation in different life spheres. Mann-Whitney test and Spearman’s rank correlation coefficient were applied for statistical data processing.

Research results.

The results of the survey support the hypothesis regarding the special character of the intra-personal conflicts of bloggers in comparison with those people who do not have blogs and use the Internet less often. In fact, conflicts between real self and virtual self are characteristic of bloggers. Most of the tension is the result of contradiction of ideas about their personal social and communicative competence and the opposition of coping strategies “acceptance of struggle – avoidance of struggle”.

Conclusions.

There are different views on how the Internet influences psychological wellbeing. Social networks allow bloggers to present themselves in a certain desired light, to create some image, to stress their unique features, to attract attention to those character properties which are not manifested in real life as desired.

Open access