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Br J Psychiatry. 1996 Dec;169(6):733-9.

Cardiovascular and respiratory risk factors and symptoms among general practice patients with long-term mental illness.

Author information

1
Division of General Practice and Primary Care, St george's Hospital Medical School, London.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

In the past, psychiatric in-patients suffered increased cardiovascular and respiratory mortality. The present study investigated whether increased risks persist among patients in the community and are being addressed in general practice.

METHOD:

A survey of 101 long-term mentally ill adults in 16 general practices in the South Thames (West) Region.

RESULTS:

Twenty-six patients were found to be obese (body mass index > 30 kg/m2), 53 were current smokers and 11 were hypertensive (mean systolic blood pressure > 160 mmHg or mean diastolic blood pressure > 100 mmHg, or both). Twenty-one reported daily cough and sputum, 24 shortness of breath, 11 wheezing and seven chest pain on exertion. These rates were significantly higher than population rates in a contemporary national survey. Nearly all the risk factors were recorded in the general practice records but few attempts to intervene were apparent.

CONCLUSIONS:

Long-term mentally ill patients remain at increased risk of cardiovascular and respiratory problems in the community. Primary care teams should make special efforts to tackle risk factors among this group.

PMID:
8968631
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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