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Studies have linked severe mental illness to higher mortality after a heart attack

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New studies show that people with severe mental illness are more likely to die after a heart attack than people without a psychiatric diagnosis.

This study was funded by the Scottish Government’s Chief Scientist Office and published in the journal BMC Medicine.

Studies show that people with schizophrenia have twice the risk of dying 30 days after a heart attack compared to people without schizophrenia.

There was no evidence of improvement in the 24 years up to 2014 examined in this study.

Researchers said the findings highlight the chronic health inequality faced by people with serious mental illness and call for immediate attention to inequality.

Experts at the University of Edinburgh surveyed data from more than 235,000 anonymous hospitals identified as having a heart attack in Scotland between 1991 and 2014.

They compared the risk of death and further heart attack and stroke in patients with heart attack with schizophrenia, major depression, or bipolar disorder and those without a history of mental illness.

The research team found that people with any of these three conditions are more likely to die within 30, 1, and 5 years than people without mental illness, and another heart attack or stroke. I found that there is a high possibility of causing.

After 30 days, patients with schizophrenia were twice as likely to die, and patients with bipolar disorder or major depression had a 30-50% increased risk of death.

People with severe mental illness are also less likely to undergo revascularization (surgery to restore blood flow), researchers said, which may indicate a difference in care.

Researchers said the findings could be due to several reasons, including poor general health, social exclusion, and possible differences in long-term treatment.

The research team advised that people with mental illness should continue to seek advice from the medical team if they are concerned about their health.

“This study highlights markedly persistent mental health inequality in the consequences of a heart attack in Scotland,” said Dr. Caroline Jackson, a senior researcher at the University of Edinburgh’s Asher Institute. It is likely to be factorial and complex and not well understood. “

“We need to know how comorbidities and lifestyle factors contribute to these disparities. We also take a closer look at the entire patient journey, from the onset of a heart attack to the rehabilitation of people with severe mental illness. Then we need to identify the weaknesses of clinical care, “Dr. Jackson added.

“To reduce premature death, equal respect between physical and mental health is essential. Physical health for symptoms,” said Francis Simpson, CEO of Mind Scotland Support, who was not involved in the study. There is a need to raise awareness among professionals that it is hidden by the side effects of psychiatric drug therapy and that people with mental illness may need more time and assistance to accept medical treatment. Can be accepted. “

“Unwellness is often accepted as an inevitable result of living with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, but we believe that everyone has the right to the best possible medical care. “I will.” Simpson concludes.

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