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1.  A first national survey of knowledge, attitudes and behaviours towards schizophrenia, bipolar disorders and autism in France 
BMC Psychiatry  2012;12:128.
In order to support evidence-based policies for reduction of stigma, a better understanding of its components: ignorance (knowledge), prejudice (attitude) and discrimination (behaviour) is necessary. This study explores public perceptions and quantifies stigma for three chronic mental disorders: autism, schizophrenia and bipolar disorders in France.
Survey of 1000 adults selected from an established market research panel. The 21-item questionnaire explored knowledge, attitudes and behaviours toward each disorder.
Although 95% respondents recognized the names of each disorder fewer than 70% could report specific characteristics and only 33% considered that publically available information was adequate; most respondents identified the media as their main resource. Labeling of conditions in a negative way was frequent (61%) when referring to mental disorders in general, but fell significantly (18%) when linked to an individual with a disorder. Individuals with schizophrenia are assumed to be dangerous; 65% respondents would engage in social distancing from such an individual, versus 29% for bipolar disorders and 7% for autism (p < 0.001). In contrast to other disorders, discrimination against schizophrenia was only partly attenuated in those with familiarity with mental disorders (through personal or family illness).
This first population-based survey in France shows that attitudes towards bipolar disorders and autism are less prejudicial than towards schizophrenia. However, most public attitudes and behaviours towards different disorders appear to be based on assumptions rather than knowledge or evidence suggesting a generic information or anti-stigma programme is unlikely to be effective.
PMCID: PMC3532222  PMID: 22928716
Mental health; Bipolar disorders; Schizophrenia; Autism; Survey; Stigma; Discrimination; Attitudes; Behaviours
3.  Relapse Prevention in Schizophrenia and Schizoaffective Disorder with Risperidone Long-Acting Injectable vs Quetiapine: Results of a Long-Term, Open-Label, Randomized Clinical Trial 
Neuropsychopharmacology  2010;35(12):2367-2377.
Chronic management of schizophrenia and schizoaffective disorders is frequently complicated by symptomatic relapse. An open-label, randomized, active-controlled, 2-year trial evaluated 710 patients with schizophrenia or related disorders who were switched from stable treatment with oral risperidone, olanzapine, or conventional neuroleptics to risperidone long-acting injectable (RLAI) or oral quetiapine. Primary effectiveness evaluation was time-to-relapse. Safety evaluations included adverse events (AEs) reported for the duration of the study, Extrapyramidal Symptom Rating Scale (ESRS), clinical laboratory tests, and vital signs. A total of 666 patients (n=329 RLAI, n=337 quetiapine) were evaluable for effectiveness measures. Baseline demographics were similar between treatment groups. Kaplan–Meier estimate of time-to-relapse was significantly longer with RLAI (p<0.0001). Relapse occurred in 16.5% of patients with RLAI and 31.3% with quetiapine. RLAI and quetiapine were both safe and well tolerated. Weight gain affected 7% of patients with RLAI and 6% with quetiapine, with mean end point increases of 1.25±6.61 and 0±6.55 kg, respectively. There were no significant between-group differences in weight gain. ESRS total scores decreased similarly after randomization to either RLAI or quetiapine. Extrapyramidal AEs occurred in 10% of patients with RLAI and 6% with quetiapine. Treatment-emergent potentially prolactin-related AEs were reported in 15 (5%) patients with RLAI and 5 (2%) patients with quetiapine; hyperprolactinemia was reported in 43 (13.1%) patients with RLAI and 5 (1.5%) patients with quetiapine. Somnolence occurred in 2% of patients with RLAI and 11% with quetiapine. To our knowledge, this is the first report of a randomized clinical trial directly comparing relapse prevention with a second-generation long-acting injectable antipsychotic and oral therapy. Time-to-relapse in stable patients with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder was significantly longer in patients randomized to RLAI compared with those randomized to oral quetiapine. Both antipsychotics were generally well tolerated.
PMCID: PMC3055334  PMID: 20686456
risperidone; quetiapine; relapse prevention; schizophrenia; long-acting injectable; schizoaffective disorder; psychiatry & behavioral sciences; biological psychiatry; clinical pharmacology/clinical trials; schizophrenia/antipsychotics; risperidone; quetiapine; relapse prevention; long-acting injectable
4.  Who seeks primary care for musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) with physicians prescribing homeopathic and other complementary medicine? Results from the EPI3-LASER survey in France 
There is a paucity of information describing patients with musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) using complementary and alternative medicines (CAMs) and almost none distinguishing homeopathy from other CAMs. The objective of this study was to describe and compare patients with MSDs who consulted primary care physicians, either certified homeopaths (Ho) or regular prescribers of CAMs in a mixed practice (Mx), to those consulting physicians who strictly practice conventional medicine (CM), with regard to the severity of their MSD expressed as chronicity, co-morbidity and quality of life (QOL).
The EPI3-LASER study was a nationwide observational survey of a representative sample of general practitioners and their patients in France. The sampling strategy ensured a sufficient number of GPs in each of the three groups to allow comparison of their patients. Patients completed a questionnaire on socio-demographics, lifestyle and QOL using the Short Form 12 (SF-12) questionnaire. Chronicity of MSDs was defined as more than twelve weeks duration of the current episode. Diagnoses and co-morbidities were recorded by the physician.
A total of 825 GPs included 1,692 MSD patients (predominantly back pain and osteoarthritis) were included, 21.6% in the CM group, 32.4% Ho and 45.9% Mx. Patients in the Ho group had more often a chronic MSD (62.1%) than the CM (48.6%) or Mx (50.3%) groups, a result that was statistically significant after controlling for patients' characteristics (Odds ratio = 1.43; 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.07 - 1.89). Patients seen by homeopaths or mixed practice physicians who were not the regular treating physician, had more often a chronic MSD than those seen in conventional medicine (Odds ratios were1.75; 95% CI: 1.22 - 2.50 and 1.48; 95% CI: 1.06 - 2.12, respectively). Otherwise patients in the three groups did not differ for co-morbidities and QOL.
MSD patients consulting primary care physicians who prescribed homeopathy and CAMs differed from those seen in conventional medicine. Chronic MSD patients represented a greater proportion of the clientele in physicians offering alternatives to conventional medicine. In addition, these physicians treated chronic patients as consulting rather than regular treating physicians, with potentially important impacts upon professional health care practices and organisation.
PMCID: PMC3034723  PMID: 21247493
5.  Prevalence of mental disorders in French prisons for men 
BMC Psychiatry  2006;6:33.
Psychiatric surveys conducted in prison populations find high prevalence rates, but diagnoses may be difficult in this particular context. None of these surveys have been conducted in France.
800 incarcerated male were sampled at random. Each prisoner was interviewed by a group of 2 clinicians, at least one of them being a senior psychiatrist. One of the clinicians used a structured clinical interview which generated DSM IV diagnosis (MINI plus); the second completed the procedure with an open clinical interview.
Prevalence rates for a diagnosis given independently by both clinicians and for a consensual diagnosis were respectively: 3.8% (6.2%) for schizophrenia, 17.9% (24%) for major depressive disorder, 12.0% (17.7%) for generalized anxiety and 10.8% (14.6%) for drug dependence.
Psychiatric diagnosis can be difficult to interpret in prison, especially using traditional standardized interviews. The approach proposed here, with good reliability and closer to a day-to-day clinical practice, yields high prevalence rates.
PMCID: PMC1559686  PMID: 16923177

Results 1-5 (5)