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Sample records for 20-item toronto alexithymia

  1. Psychometric Properties of the 20-Item Toronto Alexithymia Scale in a Group of Italian Younger Adolescents

    PubMed Central

    Faraci, Palmira; Gori, Alessio

    2015-01-01

    Objective Alexithymia is a personality construct that inhibits and interferes with normal affect regulating abilities. The purpose of our study was to assess psychometric properties of TAS-20 in younger adolescents. Methods Data were collected from 508 younger adolescents (48.8% male and 51.2% female) with a mean age of 12.56 years (DS=0.50, range: 12-13 years). We administered the following scales: 20-Item-Toronto Alexithymia Scale. Results The confirmatory factor analysis performed on the second random subsample showed reasonable goodness-of-fit for the oblique bi-factorial model: [chi]2 (32, n=254)=54.22; p=0.008; χ2/df=1.69; NNFI=0.92; CFI=0.95; SRMR=0.05; RMSEA=0.05; 90% confidence interval=0.027-0.078. Conclusion Based on the outcomes of our research we support the idea of evaluating adolescents for alexithymia. PMID:26508961

  2. Factorial Validity and Measurement Invariance of the 20-Item Toronto Alexithymia Scale in Clinical and Nonclinical Samples

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Meganck, Reitske; Vanheule, Stijn; Desmet, Mattias

    2008-01-01

    The most widely used instrument to measure alexithymia is the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20). However, different factor structures have been found in different languages. This study tests six published factor models and metric invariance across clinical and non-clinical samples. It also investigated whether there is a method effect of…

  3. Factorial structure of the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale in a large sample of somatoform patients.

    PubMed

    Koch, Anne Sarah; Kleiman, Alexandra; Wegener, Ingo; Zur, Berndt; Imbierowicz, Katrin; Geiser, Franziska; Conrad, Rupert

    2015-02-28

    Although a strong association between alexithymia and somatization has been postulated in numerous studies, no systematic study has investigated the psychometric properties of the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20) in a sample of patients with somatoform disorder yet. The purpose of this study was to ensure a valid assessment by the German version of the TAS-20 in somatoform samples. We investigated whether the original three-factor model proposed by Bagby et al. (1994a), which is widely used in clinical research and practice, is replicable in a large sample of somatoform patients (n=806). Using confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) the goodness-of-fit of the originally proposed factor structure was compared to three factor models generated with exploratory factor analysis (EFA) and other factorial solutions derived from the literature. Our results demonstrate that the original three-factor model is not replicable in somatoform patients. Instead, the four-factor model by Franz et al. (2001b) described the data best. However, none of the models met all criteria of confirmatory factor analysis. Our results indicate that the three-factor model is not robust in the German version of the TAS-20. At this state of research we recommend to use the TAS-20 sum-score as a measure of alexithymia in somatoform patients in clinical practice. PMID:25613660

  4. [Factorial analysis and internal consistency of the French version of the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS 20), in obese women].

    PubMed

    Pinaquy, S; Chabrol, H; Barbe, P

    2002-01-01

    The term alexithymia is derived from the Greek and means no words for feeling and is used to describe a personality trait characterized by the inability to experience and express emotion. Alexithymia is a relevant feature in subjects with eating disorders. The Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS) is the more used scale to assess alexithymia. The TAS 20 represents the latest revised and short version of the TAS, with psychometric properties clearly superior to the other alexithymia scales. The TAS 20 is a 20-items self-administered questionnaire including three subscales: ability to identify feelings, ability to describe feelings and externally oriented thinking. The TAS 20 was sparsely used in obese people and its validity was not studied at the present time in this specific population. The aim of this study was to assess the internal consistency and the factorial structure of the TAS 20 in a group of obese women. Method-The TAS 20 was administered to 192 obese women willing to loose weight, aged from 18 to 60 years. Their body mass index (BMI) was ranged from 27.5 to 55,0 kg/m2. The patients also completed a depression scale (Beck Depression Inventory 13). Cronbach's alpha coefficient was used to investigate the internal consistency of the scale. A confirmatory factorial analysis was performed to examine the validity of the initial three-factor structure in this population. The confirmatory factor analysis was conducted using STATISTICA 5.0((R)). Results-An exploratory factorial analysis using the principal components method was performed to search for a more relevant factorial structure. The global internal consistency value (a) was 0,74 for the full scale. The a coefficients were 0.78 and 0.67 respectively, for the two first subscales, (ability to identify feelings and ability to describe feelings), but was low (a=0.33) for the last subscale (externally oriented thinking). This result questionned the initial three-factor solution and conducted us to perform a

  5. Multimethod alexithymia assessment in adolescents and young adults with a cannabis use disorder.

    PubMed

    Dorard, Géraldine; Berthoz, Sylvie; Haviland, Mark G; Phan, Olivier; Corcos, Maurice; Bungener, Catherine

    2008-01-01

    The value of alexithymia assessments in medical and psychiatric research is well documented, but such assessments in cannabis abusers are scarce. Moreover, despite repeated calls for multimethod alexithymia evaluations, researchers typically use 1 self-report only: the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale. Herein, we evaluated (1) the psychometric properties of the Observer Alexithymia Scale (OAS), (2) the correspondence between 3 alexithymia measures, (3) OAS raters' affect and its relationship to OAS scores, and (4) cannabis abusers' alexithymic features. Eighty-seven cannabis abusers completed self-reports measuring alexithymia (Toronto Alexithymia Scale, Bermond-Vorst Alexithymia Questionnaire-B), depression (13-item Beck Depression Inventory), and anxiety (State and Trait Anxiety Inventory-Form Y) and asked relatives to rate them using the OAS. The raters also completed the self-report scales. The OAS met acceptable reliability and validity standards, with the exception of relatively low interrater reliability for one of its subscales. Rater affect appeared to influence OAS scores, albeit slightly. Patients' OAS scores were higher than scores reported for people-in-general samples and lower than those for outpatient clinical samples. Alexithymia rates were similar to those previously reported in cannabis abusers. Our results demonstrated the adequacy and appropriateness of the OAS in these (and related) clinical samples, which may encourage multimethod alexithymia assessments in both research and clinical practice. PMID:18970907

  6. Delinquency in male adolescents: the role of alexithymia and family structure.

    PubMed

    Zimmermann, Grégoire

    2006-06-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the linkages between alexithymia and delinquency in male adolescents (age ranging from 14 to 18 years), and to investigate whether alexithymia was a good discriminatory factor for juvenile delinquency. Thirty-six offender adolescents and 46 non-offender control adolescents participated in the study and completed the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20) (alexithymia), the Revised Children's Manifest Anxiety Scale (R-CMAS) (anxiety), the Liste d'Adjectifs Bipolaires et en Echelles de Likert (LABEL) (personality-Big Five) and demographic data. Findings revealed that the adolescents of the offender group scored high on alexithymia and that proportion of disrupted family structure in the offender group is higher than in the control group. Logistic regressions confirmed that alexithymia and family structure are the strongest discriminatory factors for juvenile delinquency. Limitations and clinical implications are discussed, and recommendations for future research are provided. PMID:16182361

  7. Absolute and relative stability of alexithymia in alcoholic inpatients undergoing alcohol withdrawal: relationship to depression and anxiety.

    PubMed

    de Timary, Philippe; Luts, Alain; Hers, Denis; Luminet, Olivier

    2008-01-15

    To evaluate whether alexithymia in alcohol-dependent patients is a personality trait or a state-dependent phenomenon related to depression and anxiety, we evaluated absolute stability (the extent to which alexithymia scores change over time) and relative stability (the extent to which relative differences among individuals remain the same over time) of alexithymia during alcohol withdrawal. Seventy alcohol-dependent inpatients were assessed for alexithymia, depression and anxiety with the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale, the Beck Depression Inventory and the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory at the onset of withdrawal, after 2 days and 2 weeks. Paired t-tests and correlational analyses were performed to evaluate absolute and relative stability of alexithymia and hierarchical regression analyses to assess whether alexithymia was related to anxiety and depression. Alexithymia decreased significantly from onset to end of withdrawal, but two of its three subfactors remained stable. Alexithymia scores at onset correlated significantly with scores at end, after partialling out the effects of depression and anxiety. In conclusion, the relative stability of alexithymia contrasting with large decreases in depression and anxiety during alcohol withdrawal supports the view that alexithymia is a stable personality trait rather than a state-dependent phenomenon. PMID:17884180

  8. Relationship between alexithymia and coping strategies in patients with somatoform disorder

    PubMed Central

    Tominaga, Toshiyuki; Choi, Hyungin; Nagoshi, Yasuhide; Wada, Yoshihisa; Fukui, Kenji

    2014-01-01

    Purpose A multidimensional intervention integrating alexithymia, negative affect, and type of coping strategy is needed for the effective treatment of somatoform disorder; however, few studies have applied this approach to the three different dimensions of alexithymia in patients with somatoform disorder. The purpose of this study was to determine the relationship between type of coping strategy and three different dimensions of alexithymia expressed in patients. Patients and methods A total of 196 patients with somatoform disorder completed the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale, the Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale, the Spielberger State–Trait Anxiety Inventory, the Somatosensory Amplification Scale, and the Lazarus Stress Coping Inventory. The relationships between alexithymia (Toronto Alexithymia Scale – 20 score and subscales), demographic variables, and psychological inventory scores were analyzed using Pearson’s correlation coefficients and stepwise multiple regression analysis. Results The mean Toronto Alexithymia Scale – 20 total score (56.1±10.57) was positively correlated with the number of physical symptoms as well as with psychopathology scores (Self-Rating Depression Scale, State–Trait Anxiety Inventory trait, state, and Somatosensory Amplification Scale), but negatively correlated with planful problem solving, confrontive coping, seeking social support, and positive reappraisal coping scores. With respect to coping strategy, multiple regression analyses revealed that “difficulty in identifying feelings” was positively associated with an escape–avoidance strategy, “difficulty in describing feelings” was negatively associated with a seeking social support strategy, and “externally oriented thinking” was negatively associated with a confrontive coping strategy. Conclusion Alexithymia was strongly associated with the number of somatic symptoms and negative affect. Patients with high “difficulty in describing feelings” tend to

  9. Does perceived social support and parental attitude relate to alexithymia? A study in Finnish late adolescents.

    PubMed

    Karukivi, Max; Joukamaa, Matti; Hautala, Lea; Kaleva, Olli; Haapasalo-Pesu, Kirsi-Maria; Liuksila, Pirjo-Riitta; Saarijärvi, Simo

    2011-05-15

    The aim of the present study was to explore the associations of perceived social support and parental attitude with alexithymia in a Finnish adolescent population sample. Of the initial sample of 935 adolescents, 729 (78%) answered the questionnaire and formed the final sample. The mean age of the subjects was 19 years (range 17-21 years). The 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20) was used for assessment of alexithymia. Perceived social support from family, friends, and significant other people was measured using the Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support (MSPSS). Perceived parental care and overprotection were assessed using the Parental Bonding Instrument (PBI), and separately for mother and father. After controlling for the sociodemographic factors, alexithymia was significantly associated with a lower degree of experienced social support and higher parental overprotection both in females and males. Maternal overprotection was associated (p<0.04) with TAS-20 total score as well as the Difficulty Identifying Feelings (DIF) and Difficulty Describing Feelings (DDF) subscales. The lack of social support from friends appeared to predict alexithymia more strongly than lack of support from family and significant other people. Against our hypothesis, maternal and paternal care was not directly associated with alexithymic features. This study highlights the significance of intrusive and overprotective parental attitudes as a possible risk factor for development of alexithymia. However, to assess causality, we need longitudinal studies. The results also emphasize the need for further studies to establish the significance of peer relationships in the development of alexithymia. PMID:21185086

  10. Alexithymia in Chronic Pain Disorders.

    PubMed

    Di Tella, Marialaura; Castelli, Lorys

    2016-07-01

    This review proposes a critical discussion of the recent studies investigating the presence of alexithymia in patients suffering from different chronic pain (CP) conditions. The term CP refers to pain that persists or progresses over time, while alexithymia is an affective dysregulation, largely observed in psychosomatic diseases. Overall, the examined studies showed a high prevalence of alexithymia, especially difficulties in identifying feelings, in all the different CP conditions considered. However, the association between alexithymia and pain intensity was not always clear and in some studies this relationship appeared to be mediated by negative effect, especially depression. The role of alexithymia in CP should be clarified by future studies, paying particular attention to two aspects: the use of additional measures, in addition to the Toronto Alexithymia Scale, to assess alexithymia, and the analysis of the potential differences in the evolution of different CP conditions with reference to the presence or absence of alexithymia. PMID:27215759

  11. Predicting symptoms in major depression after inpatient treatment: the role of alexithymia.

    PubMed

    Günther, Vivien; Rufer, Michael; Kersting, Anette; Suslow, Thomas

    2016-07-01

    Alexithymia has been considered to have a negative influence on the course of symptoms in various psychiatric disorders. Only a few studies of depressed patients have examined whether alexithymia predicts the outcome of therapeutic interventions or the course of symptoms in naturalistic settings. This prospective study investigated whether alexithymia is associated with depressive symptoms after a multimodal inpatient treatment. Forty-five inpatients suffering from acute major depression were examined in the initial phase of treatment and then again after seven weeks. Patients took part in a multimodal treatment programme comprising psychodynamic-interactional oriented individual and group therapy. The majority of patients were taking antidepressants during study participation. To assess alexithymia and depressive symptoms, the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), the Beck Depression Inventory II (BDI-II) and the Hamilton Depression Scale (HAMD) were administered at baseline and follow-up. When controlling for baseline depressive symptoms along with trait anxiety, high scores in the externally oriented thinking (EOT) facet of alexithymia at baseline predicted high severity of depressive symptoms at follow-up (for self-reported as well as interviewer-based scores). Inpatients suffering from major depression with a more pronounced external cognitive style might benefit less from a routine multimodal treatment approach (including psychodynamic interactional therapy, antidepressant medication, and complementary therapies). Intervention programmes might modify or account for alexithymic characteristics to improve the course of depressive symptoms in these patients. PMID:26935972

  12. Alexithymia and schizophrenias.

    PubMed

    Stanghellini, G; Ricca, V

    1995-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to verify whether an increasing degree of alexithymia correlates with a prevalence of negative over positive symptoms. The framework of the research is phenomenologically oriented conception of the illness-coping vulnerability paradigm. Schizophrenic basic symptoms as markers of schizotropic process activity were assessed with the Frankfurter Beschwerde-Fragebogen, and cognitive features of the personological matrix were investigated using the Toronto Alexithymia Scale. Our findings on a sample of 20 longitudinally followed outpatients advocate the hypothesis that among those factors characterizing the tendency towards the nonparanoid prototype of schizophrenia, impairment of language capacity and alexithymia may have a relevant role. PMID:8559950

  13. Dental fear and alexithymia among adults in Finland.

    PubMed

    Pohjola, Vesa; Mattila, Aino K; Joukamaa, Matti; Lahti, Satu

    2011-07-01

    population sample, controlling for age, gender, education and marital status as well as depressive and anxiety disorders. An additional aim was to evaluate whether gender modified this association. MATERIAL AND METHODS. The two-stage stratified cluster sample (n = 8028) represented the Finnish population aged 30 years and older. Participants (n = 5241) answered the question 'How afraid are you of visiting a dentist?' They also filled out the 20-Item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), which included three sub-scales, i.e. difficulties in identifying feelings (DIF), difficulties in describing feelings (DDF) and externally oriented thinking (EOT). Anxiety and depressive disorders were assessed with a standardized structured psychiatric interview according to DSM-IV criteria. To evaluate the association between dental fear and alexithymia, multiple logistic regression analyses were performed, adjusting simultaneously for the effects of possible confounding variables. RESULTS. Gender modified the association between dental fear and alexithymia. Among women, those reporting higher scores for TAS-20, DIF and EOT sub-scale scores were more likely to have high dental fear than were those reporting lower scores. Among men no such association was observed. Those participants who reported high DDF sub-scale scores were more likely to have high dental fear than were those reporting lower scores. CONCLUSIONS. Alexithymics are more likely to have high dental fear than non-alexithymics are. The findings support the suggestion that some people with dental fear may have internal personality vulnerability to anxiety disorders. PMID:21294672

  14. Association between the Catechol-O-Methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met Polymorphism and Alexithymia in Patients with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Koh, Min Jung; Kang, Jee In; Namkoong, Kee; Lee, Su Young

    2016-01-01

    Purpose Alexithymia, defined as a deficit in the ability to recognize and describe one's own feelings, may be related to the development and maintenance of obsessive-compulsive symptoms. The aim of this study was to evaluate the association between the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) Val158Met polymorphism and alexithymia in patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Materials and Methods We recruited 244 patients with OCD (169 males, 75 females). Alexithymia was assessed using the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), and genotyping of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism was evaluated. Results Patients with the COMT Val/Val genotype had significantly higher total and "difficulty identifying feelings" (DIF) subdimension scores than those with the Val/Met or Met/Met genotypes. Patients with the COMT Val/Val genotype had significantly higher "difficulty describing feelings" (DDF) subdimension scores than those with the COMT Val/Met genotype. However, there were no differences in the scores for the "externally oriented thinking" (EOT) subdimension among the three genotypes. Conclusion These results indicate that the high-activity Val allele of the COMT Val158Met polymorphism is associated with increased alexithymic traits in patients with OCD. The present finding suggests that alexithymia is an endophenotype of OCD that is mediated by the COMT Val158Met polymorphism. PMID:26996573

  15. Alexithymia and fertility-related stress.

    PubMed

    Gourounti, Kleanthi; Anagnostopoulos, Fotios; Griva, Faie; Vaslamatzis, Grigorios

    2016-01-01

    The investigation of the relationship between alexithymia, the inability to identify and describe feelings and the absence of fantasies, and fertility-related distress is a relatively neglected area of research. The aims of this study were to examine: (1) the prevalence of alexithymia in a sample of infertile women, and (2) the association between alexithymia, coping strategies, and fertility-related stress. This study included 160 infertile women undergoing in vitro fertilization in a public fertility clinic from September of 2013 to December of 2013. Self-report instruments were used to measure alexithymia (Toronto Alexithymia Scale-20), coping (COPE), and fertility-related stress (Fertility Problem Inventory). Bivariate and multiple linear regression were used. A high alexithymia score was positively associated with age, infertility duration, and low educational and economic level. Multivariate analyses showed that, controlling for demographic factors, high avoidance coping, low problem-appraisal coping, and high alexithymia were positively associated with fertility-related stress (β = 0.309, p < .001, β = -0.203, p = .006, β = 0.151, p = .050, respectively). Results of this study indicated that alexithymia during fertility treatment was associated with maladaptive coping strategies and psychological stress. In addition, the association between alexithymia and duration of infertility may be interpreted as secondary alexithymia acts as a coping strategy in infertile women. PMID:26361792

  16. The role of alexithymia in the development of functional motor symptoms (conversion disorder)

    PubMed Central

    Demartini, Benedetta; Petrochilos, Panayiota; Ricciardi, Lucia; Price, Gary; Edwards, Mark J; Joyce, Eileen

    2014-01-01

    Background The mechanisms leading to the development of functional motor symptoms (FMS) are of pathophysiological and clinical relevance, yet are poorly understood. Aim The aim of the present study was to evaluate whether impaired emotional processing at the cognitive level (alexithymia) is present in patients affected by FMS. We conducted a cross-sectional study in a population of patients with FMS and in two control groups (patients with organic movement disorders (OMD) and healthy volunteers). Methods 55 patients with FMS, 33 patients affected by OMD and 34 healthy volunteers were recruited. The assessment included the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), the Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating Scale, the Reading the Mind in the Eyes’ Test and the Structured Clinical Interview for Personality Disorders. Results Alexithymia was present in 34.5% of patients with FMS, 9.1% with OMD and 5.9% of the healthy volunteers, which was significantly higher in the FMS group (χ2 (2)=14.129, p<0.001), even after controlling for the severity of symptoms of depression. Group differences in mean scores were observed on both the difficulty identifying feelings and difficulty describing feelings dimensions of the TAS-20, whereas the externally orientated thinking subscale score was similar across the three groups. Regarding personality disorder, χ2 analysis showed a significantly higher prominence of obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (OCPD) in the FMS group (χ2 (2)=16.217, p<0.001) and 71.4% of those with OCPD also reached threshold criteria for alexithymia. Conclusions Because alexithymia is a mental state denoting the inability to identify emotions at a cognitive level, one hypothesis is that some patients misattribute autonomic symptoms of anxiety, for example, tremor, paraesthesiae, paralysis, to that of a physical illness. Further work is required to understand the contribution of OCPD to the development of FMS. PMID:24610939

  17. Alexithymia in chronic urticaria patients.

    PubMed

    Barbosa, Filipe; Freitas, João; Barbosa, Antonio

    2011-03-01

    Alexithymia has been described as an important dimension in several medical and psychiatric diseases. Chronic urticaria (CU) is a chronic condition, in which treatment is difficult. Our aim is to determine the prevalence of alexithymia traits in patients with CU, and to identify the relationships between alexithymia and psychological variables and quality-of-life dimensions. Fifty-five sequential CU patients in a faculty ambulatory specialized consultation, with an average age of 44.92, were compared with 31 healthy volunteers. Both groups were studied by means of validated scales for alexithymia (Toronto Alexithymia Scale [TAS-20]), attachment (Adult Attachment Scale-R [AAS-R]), psychopathology (Brief Symptom Inventory [BSI]), personality dimensions (The NEO Five-Factor inventory [NEO-FFI]) and quality of life (Short Form-36 [SF-36]). The classification of CU reactions was obtained from the patient's history, physical examination, laboratory assessment and histopathologic findings. All the patients were under treatment with sedating H1-antihistamines, non-sedating H1-antihistamines combination of H1 and H2 blocker, 2 H1-antihistamines and 3 H1-antihistamines. High traits of alexithymia were found on CU patients (56.9%) as well as high symptom rates of anxiety. Alexithymia traits were significantly positively correlated with insecure attachment styles, with psychopathological symptoms, and with the defense mechanism turn against self. We also reported a significant negative correlation between alexithymia traits and the dimensions of quality of life. Insecure attachment styles were positively correlated with psychopathological symptoms and negatively correlated with quality of life. We did not find significant statistical correlations between alexithymia and clinical variables. CU patients present serious difficulty in dealing with emotion arousal. There is strong evidence of a psychosomatic specificity in CU, with marked alexithymic traits. PMID:21328149

  18. Alexithymia Associated with Nightmare Distress in Idiopathic REM Sleep Behavior Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Godin, Isabelle; Montplaisir, Jaques; Gagnon, Jean-François; Nielsen, Tore

    2013-01-01

    Study Objectives: Idiopathic REM sleep behavior disorder (iRBD) is characterized by atypical REM sleep motor activity, vivid dreams and nightmares, and dream-enacting behaviors that can result in injuries to the patient and bed partner. It is also a known predictor of Parkinson disease (PD). Alexithymia has been associated with disturbances in sleep and dreaming (e.g., nightmares) and is a non-motor symptom of PD. We assessed alexithymia and disturbed dreaming in iRBD patients with the aim of determining if these two factors are elevated and interrelated among this population. Design: Questionnaire study of clinically diagnosed patients. Setting: Clinical sleep disorders center. Patients or participants: Thirty-two iRBD patients and 30 healthy age- and sex-matched control participants. Measurements and Results: Participants completed the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), the Dream Questionnaire, and the Beck Depression Inventory. iRBD patients obtained higher TAS-20 total scores (62.16 ± 13.90) than did controls (52.84 ± 7.62; F1,59 = 10.44, P < 0.01), even when controlling for depressive symptoms, and more frequently attained the suggested cutoff for alexithymia than did controls (P < 0.01). iRBD patients obtained higher scores on the Difficulty Identifying Feelings alexithymia subscale. For both iRBD and control groups, the Difficulty Indentifying Feelings subscale correlated positively with the Nightmare Distress scale of the Dream Questionnaire. Conclusions: Elevated alexithymia scores among idiopathic rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder patients, and especially a difficulty in identifying feelings, parallels evidence of dysautonomia in this population. The higher incidence of distressing nightmares and the association of nightmares with alexithymia further extend similar findings for both clinical and non-clinical samples and suggest that an affect regulation disturbance may be common to the two sets of symptoms. Citation: Godin I

  19. A Comparative Study on Alexithymia in Depressive, Somatoform, Anxiety, and Psychotic Disorders among Koreans

    PubMed Central

    Son, Sung hwa; Jo, Hyunyoung; Rim, Hyo Deog; Kim, Ju Hee; Kim, Hea Won; Bae, Geum Ye

    2012-01-01

    Objective Little is known about the characteristic differences in alexithymic construct in various psychiatric disorders because of a paucity of direct comparisons between psychiatric disorders. Therefore, this study explored disorder-related differences in alexithymic characteristics among Korean patients diagnosed with four major psychiatric disorders (n=388). Methods Alexithymic tendencies, as measured by the Korean version of the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20K), of patients classified into four groups according to major psychiatric diagnosis were compared. The groups consisted of patients with depressive disorders (DP; n=125), somatoform disorders (SM; n=78), anxiety disorders (AX; n=117), and psychotic disorders (PS; n=68). Results We found that substantial portions of patients in all groups were classified as having alexithymia and no statistical intergroup differences emerged (42.4%, 35.9%, 35.3%, and 33.3% for DP, SM, PS, and AX). However, patients with DP obtained higher scores in factor 2 (difficulties describing feelings) than those with SM or AX, after adjusting for demographic variables. Conclusion These findings suggest that alexithymia might be associated with a higher vulnerability to depressive disorders and factor 2 of TAS-20K could be a discriminating feature of depressive disorders. PMID:23251195

  20. Aging and Alexithymia Association with Reduced Right Rostral Cingulate Volume

    PubMed Central

    Paradiso, Sergio; Vaidya, Jatin G.; McCormick, Laurie M.; Jones, Andria; Robinson, Robert G.

    2008-01-01

    Objectives Previous studies have linked alexithymia to an inability to process emotions appropriately. Older persons show changes in emotion processing and have higher alexithymia scores. Because the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) is one of the regions showing earlier decline in late-life and alexithymia appears to be related to a dysfunction in right hemisphere regions including the ACC subserving affective processes, the present study sought to test the hypothesis that reduced ACC volume accounts for the association between older age and alexithymia. Design Correlation analyses between functionally distinct ACC subregions, age and alexithymia features. Setting University of Iowa Participants 24 healthy volunteers aged twenty-four to seventy-nine years. Measurements Psychiatric and neuropsychological assessment and assessment of alexithymia using the twenty items Toronto Alexithymia Scale. High-resolution magnetic resonance imaging, and in-house developed methods for ACC parcellation. Results Older age directly correlated with higher overall alexithymia, and reduced bilateral rostral and right dorsal ACC grey matter volume. Furthermore, higher alexithymia scores correlated with reduced right rostral ACC volume. This correlation appeared to be influenced primarily by factor 3 of the alexithymia scale measuring diversion of attention to external details in place of internal feelings. Conclusions These results suggest that alexithymia in older age may be a result of structural changes in the right rostral ACC. PMID:18697882

  1. Caffeine use and alexithymia in university students.

    PubMed

    Lyvers, Michael; Duric, Natalija; Thorberg, Fred Arne

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Alexithymia refers to difficulties with identifying, describing, and regulating one's own emotions. This trait dimension has been linked to risky or harmful use of alcohol and illicit drugs; however, the most widely used psychoactive drug in the world, caffeine, has not been examined previously in relation to alexithymia. The present study assessed 106 male and female university students aged 18-30 years on their caffeine use in relation to several traits, including alexithymia. The 18 participants defined as alexithymic based on their Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20) scores reported consuming nearly twice as much caffeine per day as did non-alexithymic or borderline alexithymic participants. They also scored significantly higher than controls on indices of frontal lobe dysfunction as well as anxiety symptoms and sensitivity to punishment. In a hierarchical linear regression model, sensitivity to punishment negatively predicted daily caffeine intake, suggesting caffeine avoidance by trait-anxious individuals. Surprisingly, however, TAS-20 alexithymia scores positively predicted caffeine consumption. Possible reasons for the positive relationship between caffeine use and alexithymia are discussed, concluding that this outcome is tentatively consistent with the hypo-arousal model of alexithymia. PMID:25188705

  2. Metacognition Beliefs and General Health in Predicting Alexithymia in Students

    PubMed Central

    Babaei, Samaneh; Varandi, Shahryar Ranjbar; Hatami, Zohre; Gharechahi, Maryam

    2016-01-01

    Objectives: The present study was conducted to investigate the role of metacognition beliefs and general health in alexithymia in Iranian students. Methods: This descriptive and correlational study included 200 participants of high schools students, selected randomly from students of two cities (Sari and Dargaz), Iran. Metacognitive Strategies Questionnaire (MCQ-30); the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ) and Farsi Version of the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20) were used for gathering the data. Using the Pearson’s correlation method and regression, the data were analyzed. Results: The findings indicated significant positive relationships between alexithymia and all subscales of general health. The highest correlation was between alexithymia and anxiety subscale (r=0.36, P<0.01). Also, there was a significant negative relationship between alexithymia and some metacognitive strategies. The highest significant negative relationship was seen between alexithymia and the sub-scale of risk uncontrollability (r=-0.359, P < 0.01). Based on the results of multiple regressions, three predictors explained 21% of the variance (R2=0. 21, F=7.238, P<0.01). It was found that anxiety subscale of General Health significantly predicted 13% of the variance of alexithymia (β=0.36, P<0.01) and risk uncontrollability subscale of Metacognition beliefs predicted about 8% of the variance of alexithymia (β=-0.028, P<0.01). Conclusions: The findings demonstrated that metacognition beliefs and general health had important role in predicting of alexithymia in students. PMID:26383206

  3. Alexithymia and Early Maladaptive Schemas in chronic pain patients.

    PubMed

    Saariaho, Anita S; Saariaho, Tom H; Mattila, Aino K; Karukivi, Max; Joukamaa, Matti I

    2015-08-01

    Psychological factors have an impact on subjective pain experience. The aim of this study was to explore the occurrence of alexithymia and Early Maladaptive Schemas in a sample of 271 first visit chronic pain patients of six pain clinics. The patients completed the study questionnaire consisting of the Toronto Alexithymia Scale-20, the Finnish version of the Young Schema Questionnaire short form-extended, the Beck Depression Inventory-II, and pain variables. Alexithymic patients scored higher on Early Maladaptive Schemas and had more pain intensity, pain disability and depression than nonalexithymic patients. Both alexithymia and depression correlated significantly with most Early Maladaptive Schemas. The co-occurrence of alexithymia, Early Maladaptive Schemas and depression seems to worsen the pain experience. Screening of alexithymia, depression and Early Maladaptive Schemas may help to plan psychological treatment interventions for chronic pain patients. PMID:26040835

  4. Evidence of Contrasting Patterns for Suppression and Reappraisal Emotion Regulation Strategies in Alexithymia.

    PubMed

    Laloyaux, Julien; Fantini, Carole; Lemaire, Morgan; Luminet, Olivier; Larøi, Frank

    2015-09-01

    Alexithymia generally refers to difficulties in identifying and describing emotions. In this paper, two studies explored whether the emotion deficits observed in alexithymia may be related to the use of emotion regulation strategies. Relations with various sociodemographic variables were also explored. In the first study, 255 students completed the Emotion Regulation Questionnaire (ERQ) and the Toronto Alexithymia Scale-20. For the second study, 1107 participants from the general population completed the ERQ and the Bermond-Vorst Alexithymia Questionnaire. Results demonstrated that alexithymia was related to the use of a suppression strategy and in particular to difficulties verbalizing emotions, suggesting that the capacity to communicate and name one's emotion is a central aspect in alexithymia. Concerning sociodemographic variables, alexithymia and the use of a suppression strategy were found to be related to age and to be higher in males. The results of these studies and their clinical implications for treatment are discussed. PMID:26252826

  5. Alexithymia and Acne Vulgaris: A Case Control Study

    PubMed Central

    Baykir, Murat; Ateş, Gülfem; Ekşioğlu, Meral

    2011-01-01

    Objective To assess relationship between alexithymia and acne vulgaris in young people. Methods A hundred and eleven subjects between 15 and 25 years of age referred to out-patient clinic of dermatology with acne and 78 subjects applied to family physician for complaints other than acne were included in patient and control groups of the study, respectively. A questionnaire to determine demographic characteristics, an acne classification to determine severity of acne and Toronto Alexithymic Scale (TAS) to assess alexithymia were used. Results The mean scores of TAS were 52.7±10.8 and 51.7±10.7 in patient and control groups, respectively. Alexitymia was determined in 23.4% of the subjects in acne group and in 24.4% of control group. No significant differences were found between groups in terms of alexithymia, intermediate alexitymia and three-factors of TAS. Conclusion Alexithymia does not appear to be related to acne vulgaris. PMID:22216042

  6. Alexithymia in anorexia nervosa: the mediating role of depression.

    PubMed

    Torres, Sandra; Guerra, Marina Prista; Lencastre, Leonor; Miller, Kylee; Vieira, Filipa Mucha; Roma-Torres, António; Brandão, Isabel; Costa, Patrício

    2015-01-30

    The role of depression in the expression of alexithymia in anorexia nervosa (AN) has been controversially explained and several variables that may mask or increase the presence of emotional difficulties have scant examination in previous studies. This study aims to analyze the associations between alexithymia and state variables, such as age, BMI, illness duration, treatment duration, and medication status in AN participants, and to test the mediating role of depression in emotional difficulties. The Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20) and the Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale were administrated to 160 females: 80 participants with AN and 80 healthy controls. High levels of alexithymia were not a function of state variables. The mediating role of depression differed by the alexithymia dimension, with total mediation found for the TAS-DDF and partial mediation found for the TAS-DIF. Alexithymia is a relevant feature throughout the spectrum of AN and does not seem to be related to developmental maturation and some clinical features. Depression is probably the variable that best accounts for the variance in alexithymia, but is not a complete explanation for the known cognitive-affective disturbances in AN. Specific emotional competencies require scrutiny during psychiatric treatment. PMID:25467697

  7. RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN ALEXITHYMIA, PARENTING STYLE, AND PARENTAL CONTROL.

    PubMed

    Cuzzocrea, Francesca; Barberis, Nadia; Costa, Sebastiano; Larcan, Rosalba

    2015-10-01

    Research on the relationship between parental alexithymia and parenting is relatively scarce. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationships between parental alexithymia and three styles of parenting (authoritarian, authoritative, and permissive) and the relationships between parental alexithymia and two domains of psychological control (dependency and achievement). The participants were 946 parents ages 29-60 years (mothers: n = 473, M age = 44.6 yr., SD = 4.7; fathers: n = 473, M age = 48.1 yr., SD = 5.1) of children ages 11-18 years. All participants completed a sociodemographic questionnaire, the Toronto Alexithymia Scale-20 (TAS-20), the Parental Authority Questionnaire-Revised (PAQ-R), and the Dependency-Oriented and Achievement-Oriented Psychological Control Scale (DAPCS). Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) was used to examine whether alexithymia could predict the three parenting styles (authoritarian, authoritative, and permissive) and the two domains of psychological control (dependency and achievement). The first model showed that alexithymia was a positive predictor of authoritative and permissive parenting and a negative predictor of authoritarian parenting in both paternal and maternal data. The second model showed that, in both paternal and maternal data, alexithymia was a positive predictor of both dependency-oriented psychological control (DPC) and achievement-oriented psychological control (APC). PMID:26444844

  8. Alexithymia, empathy, and psychological symptoms in a family context.

    PubMed

    Guttman, Herta; Laporte, Lise

    2002-01-01

    Levels of alexithymia were measured with the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20) in families of women with borderline personality disorder (BPD), restricting anorexia nervosa (AN) and a nonclinical (NC) group. Measures were correlated with sociodemographic information, empathy (as measured by the Interpersonal Reactivity Index [IRI]), emotional distress (using the Symptom Checklist-90-R [SCL-90-R]), and experiences of abuse. We have found that male gender, age, and low socioeconomic status are correlated with factor 3 of the TAS-20; that women with BPD and AN are more alexithymic than control subjects; that women with AN are more alexithymic than their parents; and that alexithymia is inversely related to the capacity for empathy. Family members of women with BPD have the highest levels of alexithymia and in these families there seems to be a complementary association between alexithymia in one parent and low levels of empathy in the other. There may be an association between the general emotional distress, history of abuse, and high levels of alexithymia that occur in women with BPD. PMID:12439832

  9. The Relationship between Childhood Sexual Abuse, Complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Alexithymia in Two Outpatient Samples: Examination of Women Treated in Community and Institutional Clinics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McLean, Linda M.; Toner, Brenda; Jackson, Jennifer; Desrocher, Mary; Stuckless, Noreen

    2006-01-01

    Relationships between trauma variables, complex post-traumatic stress disorder (complex PTSD), affect dysregulation, dissociation, somatization, and alexithymia were studied in 70 women with early-onset sexual abuse treated in community-based private (n = 25) or clinic outpatient settings (n = 45). Measures were the Toronto Alexithymia Scale-20…

  10. Relation between alexithymia and the five-factor model of personality: a facet-level analysis.

    PubMed

    Luminet, O; Bagby, R M; Wagner, H; Taylor, G J; Parker, J D

    1999-12-01

    The relation between alexithymia and both the domain and the facet level of the five-factor model (FFM) of personality was examined in a sample of 101 university students by using the Twenty-Item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20; Bagby, Taylor, & Parker, 1994) and the Revised NEO Personality Inventory (Costa & McCrae, 1992c). Consistent with the alexithymia construct, the TAS-20 was positively correlated with Neuroticism (N) and negatively correlated with Extraversion (E) and Openness (O), whereas no significant relations were found with Agreeableness (A) and Conscientiousness (C). Analysis of the lower order traits (i.e., facets) of the FFM revealed that depression for N; positive emotions and assertiveness for E; feelings and actions for O; altruism, tender-mindedness, and modesty for A; and competence for C predicted alexithymia. These results support the uniqueness of the alexithymia construct, which is represented by a cluster of traits across the dimensions and facets of the FFM. PMID:10689648

  11. Sense of alexithymia in patients with anxiety disorders comorbid with recurrent urticaria

    PubMed Central

    Ogłodek, Ewa A; Szota, Anna M; Just, Marek J; Araszkiewicz, Aleksander; Szromek, Adam R

    2016-01-01

    Aim Alexithymia is associated with limited cognitive processing of emotions by an individual suffering from recurrent urticaria and alexithymia and makes them focus on somatic manifestations of emotional arousal and on poorly controlled compulsive reactions to negative stimulation. Alexithymia is considered to be a personality trait, which, along with other factors, predisposes individuals toward developing somatic diseases. The aim of the study was to assess the measurement of alexithymic features in patients with recurrent urticaria and to assess the types of concurrent anxiety disorders and overall anxiety level. Methods In order to diagnose clinical anxiety symptoms in patients, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition and the Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale were applied. Alexithymic features were measured by means of a shortened version of the Toronto Alexithymia Scale, characterized by high discrimination power, internal coherence, and reliability. Results According to the Toronto Alexithymia Scale results, the greatest contributing factor was “inability to differentiate between feelings and bodily sensations”. This was observed in both males and females. Most frequently, the patients were found to suffer from generalized anxiety disorder and social phobia. Conclusion Alexithymia may result from the difficulty associated with expressing emotions caused by anxiety disorders. Undergoing treatment for anxiety disorders may contribute to reduced exacerbation of urticaria. PMID:27143899

  12. Traumatic experiences, alexithymia, and posttraumatic symptomatology: a cross-sectional population-based study in Germany

    PubMed Central

    Eichhorn, Svenja; Brähler, Elmar; Franz, Matthias; Friedrich, Michael; Glaesmer, Heide

    2014-01-01

    Objective Previous studies have established an association between number of traumatic experiences and alexithymia. The present study examines this relationship in a large-scale representative sample of the German general population (N=2,507) and explores the potential mediating effects of posttraumatic symptomatology, particularly avoidance/numbing. Methods Alexithymia was assessed with the German version of the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20). Posttraumatic symptomatology was operationalized by the symptom score of the modified German version of the Posttraumatic Symptom Scale, and traumatic experiences were assessed with the trauma list of the Munich Composite International Diagnostic Interview. Two mediation analyses were conducted. Results Of the total sample, 24.2% (n=606) reported at least one traumatic experience, 10.6% (n=258) were classified as alexithymic, and 2.4% (n=59) fulfilled the criteria of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Participants who had survived five or more traumatic experiences had significantly higher alexithymia sum scores. The PTSD symptom cluster avoidance/numbing mediated the association between the number of traumatic experiences and alexithymia. Conclusions Our findings illustrate an association between number of traumatic experiences and alexithymia and the influence of emotional avoidance and numbing within this relationship. The significant relationship between alexithymia and number of traumatic experiences in a general population sample further supports the concept of multiple and complex traumatization as associated with alexithymia. The results suggest the importance of further investigations determining the causal impact of alexithymia both as a potential premorbid trait and as consequence of traumatization. Lastly, future investigations are needed to clarify alexithymia as a distinct trauma-relevant characteristic for better diagnostics and specialized trauma-integrative therapy. PMID:25206956

  13. A behavior genetic analysis of trait emotional intelligence and alexithymia: a replication.

    PubMed

    Baughman, Holly M; Schermer, Julie Aitken; Veselka, Livia; Harris, Juliette; Vernon, Philip A

    2013-04-01

    This replication study examines relations between alexithymia and trait emotional intelligence (trait EI) at the phenotypic, genetic, and environmental levels. A sample of 1,444 same-sex twin pairs (850 MZ pairs and 594 DZ pairs) completed the Toronto Alexithymia Scale-20. A subset of 494 same-sex twin pairs (287 MZ pairs and 207 DZ pairs) had earlier completed the Trait Emotional Intelligence Questionnaire. Individual differences in alexithymia were attributable to genetic, non-shared environmental, and shared environmental factors. All but one of the facets of alexithymia were negatively and significantly correlated with the factors of trait EI, and these phenotypic correlations were entirely attributable to correlated genetic and correlated non-shared environmental factors. These bivariate results provide a valuable replication of those of Baughman et al. (Twin Research and Human Genetics, Vol. 14, 2011, pp. 539-543), which was conducted with substantially smaller samples of twins. PMID:23298794

  14. Alexithymia in parents and adolescent anorexic daughters: comparing the responses to TSIA and TAS-20 scales

    PubMed Central

    Balottin, Laura; Nacinovich, Renata; Bomba, Monica; Mannarini, Stefania

    2014-01-01

    Background A growing body of literature has been focusing on individual alexithymia in anorexia nervosa, while there are only scarce and conflicting studies on alexithymia in the families of anorexic patients, despite the important role played by family dynamics in the development of the anorexic disorder, especially in adolescent patients. The aim of this study is to assess alexithymia in anorexic adolescent patients and in their parents using a multimethod measurement to gain more direct, in-depth knowledge of the problem. Methods Forty-six subjects, anorexic adolescent patients and their parents, underwent the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20) along with the Toronto Structured Interview for Alexithymia (TSIA), which represents the first comprehensive clinically structured interview focused specifically on assessing alexithymia. The use of latent trait Rasch analysis allowed a comparison of the two instruments’ sensitivity and ability to detect the presence and intensity of alexithymic components in patients and parents. Results Significant discordance was found between the two measures. The clinical instrument allowed detection of a greater level of alexithymia compared with the self-report, in particular in our adult parent sample. Moreover, a significant alexithymic gap emerged within families, particularly within parental couples, with noticeably more alexithymic fathers compared with the mothers. Conclusion The TSIA clinical interview may be a more sensitive instrument in detecting alexithymia, minimizing parents’ negation tendency. Clinical questions have arisen on how useful it would be to give greater weight to family functioning (ie, alexithymic gap) in order to predict the possibility of establishing a therapeutic alliance, and thus the outcome of the anorexic adolescent. PMID:25336959

  15. Temperament, character traits, and alexithymia in patients with panic disorder

    PubMed Central

    Izci, Filiz; Gültekin, Bulent Kadri; Saglam, Sema; Koc, Merve Iris; Zincir, Selma Bozkurt; Atmaca, Murad

    2014-01-01

    Background The primary aim of the present study was to compare temperament and character traits and levels of alexithymia between patients with panic disorder and healthy controls. Methods Sixty patients with panic disorder admitted to the psychiatry clinic at Fırat University Hospital were enrolled in the study, along with 62 healthy age-matched and sex-matched controls. The Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV axis I (SCID-I), Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI), Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), and Panic Agoraphobia Scale (PAS) were administered to all subjects. Results Within the temperament dimension, the mean subscale score for harm avoidance was significantly higher in patients with panic disorder than in controls. With respect to character traits, mean scores for self-directedness and cooperativeness were significantly lower than in healthy controls. Rates of alexithymia were 35% (n=21) and 11.3% (n=7) in patients with panic disorder and healthy controls, respectively. The difficulty identifying feelings subscale score was significantly higher in patients with panic disorder (P=0.03). A moderate positive correlation was identified between PAS and TAS scores (r=0.447, P<0.01). Moderately significant positive correlations were also noted for PAS and TCI subscale scores and scores for novelty seeking, harm avoidance, and self-transcendence. Conclusion In our study sample, patients with panic disorder and healthy controls differed in TCI parameters and rate of alexithymia. Larger prospective studies are required to assess for causal associations. PMID:24876780

  16. Alexithymia and overeating.

    PubMed

    Wheeler, K; Broad, R D

    1994-01-01

    While obesity is a complex, multidetermined disorder, a significant subgroup of overeaters suffer from alexithymia, which contributes to weight gain and difficulties in losing weight. For these individuals, food is used to regulate tension and inner-feeling states. The authors advocate psychotherapy aimed toward helping clients differentiate feelings and develop the capacity for symbolization as the most effective treatment. PMID:7532296

  17. The Relationship Between Alopecia Areata and Alexithymia, Anxiety and Depression: A Case-Control Study

    PubMed Central

    Sellami, Rim; Masmoudi, J; Ouali, U; Mnif, L; Amouri, M; Turki, H; Jaoua, A

    2014-01-01

    Background: Alopecia areata (AA) is a skin disease characterized by the sudden appearance of areas of hair loss on the scalp and other hair-bearing areas, but its aesthetic repercussions can lead to profound changes in patient's psychological status and relationships. Aim: The goal was to investigate a possible relationship between AA and alexithymia as well as two other emotional dimensions, anxiety and depression. Materials and Methods: Fifty patients with AA seen in the Department of Dermatology of Hedi Chaker University Hospital, Sfax were included in this study. Anxiety and depression were evaluated by Hospital Anxiety and Depression scale questionnaire, alexithymia was assessed by Toronto Alexithymia scale 20, and severity of AA was measured by Severity of Alopecia Tool. Results: Patient's mean age was 32.92 years. 52% of patients were females. Depression and anxiety were detected respectively in 38% and 62% of patients. There was statistically significant difference between patients and control group in terms of depression (P = 0.047) and anxiety (P = 0.005). Forty-two percent of patients scored positive for alexithymia. No significant difference was found between patient and control groups (P = 0.683) in terms of alexithymia. Anxiety was responsible for 14.7% of variation in alexithymia (P = 0.047). Conclusions: Our study shows a high prevalence of anxiety and depressive symptoms in AA patients. Dermatologists should be aware of the psychological impact of AA, especially as current treatments have limited effectiveness. PMID:25071275

  18. Illuminating the theoretical components of alexithymia using bifactor modeling and network analysis.

    PubMed

    Watters, Carolyn A; Taylor, Graeme J; Bagby, R Michael

    2016-06-01

    Alexithymia is a multifaceted personality construct that reflects deficits in affect awareness (difficulty identifying feelings, DIF; difficulty describing feelings, DDF) and operative thinking (externally oriented thinking, EOT; restricted imaginal processes, IMP), and is associated with several common psychiatric disorders. Over the years, researchers have debated the components that comprise the construct with some suggesting that IMP and EOT may reflect constructs somewhat distinct from alexithymia. In this investigation, we attempt to clarify the components and their interrelationships using a large heterogeneous multilanguage sample (N = 839), and an interview-based assessment of alexithymia (Toronto Structured Interview for Alexithymia; TSIA). To this end, we used 2 distinctly different but complementary methods, bifactor modeling and network analysis. Results of the confirmatory bifactor model and related reliability estimates supported a strong general factor of alexithymia; however, the majority of reliable variance for IMP was independent of this general factor. In contrast, network analysis results were based on a network comprised of only substantive partial correlations among TSIA items. Modularity analysis revealed 3 communities of items, where DIF and DDF formed 1 community, and EOT and IMP formed separate communities. Network metrics supported that the majority of central items resided in the DIF/DDF community and that IMP items were connected to the network primarily through EOT. Taken together, results suggest that IMP, at least as measured by the TSIA, may not be as salient a component of the alexithymia construct as are the DIF, DDF, and EOT components. (PsycINFO Database Record PMID:26168310

  19. Dorsal Anterior Cingulate Thickness Is Related to Alexithymia in Childhood Trauma-Related PTSD.

    PubMed

    Demers, Lauren A; Olson, Elizabeth A; Crowley, David J; Rauch, Scott L; Rosso, Isabelle M

    2015-01-01

    Alexithymia, or "no words for feelings", is highly prevalent in samples with childhood maltreatment and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC) has been identified as a key region involved in alexithymia, early life trauma, and PTSD. Functional alterations in the dACC also have been associated with alexithymia in PTSD. This study examined whether dACC morphology is a neural correlate of alexithymia in child maltreatment-related PTSD. Sixteen adults with PTSD and a history of childhood sexual abuse, physical abuse, or exposure to domestic violence, and 24 healthy controls (HC) completed the Toronto Alexithymia Scale 20 (TAS-20) and underwent magnetic resonance imaging. Cortical thickness of the dACC was measured using FreeSurfer, and values were correlated with TAS-20 scores, controlling for sex and age, in both groups. Average TAS-20 score was significantly higher in the PTSD than the HC group. TAS-20 scores were significantly positively associated with dACC thickness only in the PTSD group. This association was strongest in the left hemisphere and for TAS-20 subscales that assess difficulty identifying and describing feelings. We found that increasing dACC gray matter thickness is a neural correlate of greater alexithymia in the context of PTSD with childhood maltreatment. While findings are correlational, they motivate further inquiry into the relationships between childhood adversity, emotional awareness and expression, and dACC morphologic development in trauma-related psychopathology. PMID:26439117

  20. Alexithymia in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus: the role of anxiety, depression, and glycemic control

    PubMed Central

    Avci, Dilek; Kelleci, Meral

    2016-01-01

    Objective This study was aimed at determining the prevalence of alexithymia in patients with type 2 DM and the factors affecting it. Methods This cross-sectional study was conducted with 326 patients with type 2 DM. Study data were collected with the Personal Information Form, Toronto Alexithymia Scale, and Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale. Glycemic control was assessed by glycated haemoglobin (HbA1c) results. The analysis was performed using descriptive statistics, chi-square test, Pear-son’s correlation, and logistic regression analysis. Results Of the patients, 37.7% were determined to have alexithymia. A significant relationship was determined between alexithymia and HbA1c, depression, and anxiety. According to binary logistic regression analyses, alexithymia was 2.63 times higher among those who were in a paid employment than those who were not, 2.09 times higher among those whose HbA1c levels were ≥7.0% than those whose HbA1c levels were <7.0%, 3.77 times higher among those whose anxiety subscale scores were ≥11 than those whose anxiety subscale scores were ≤10, and 2.57 times higher among those whose depression subscale scores were ≥8 than those whose depression subscale scores were ≤7. Conclusion In this study, it was determined that two out of every five patients with DM had alexithymia. Therefore, their treatment should be arranged to include mental health care services. PMID:27499615

  1. Metacognition and Body Image in Predicting Alexithymia in Substance Abusers

    PubMed Central

    Babaei, Samaneh; Gharechahi, Maryam; Hatami, Zohreh; Ranjbar Varandi, Shahryar

    2015-01-01

    Background: Substance dependency is one of the biggest problems and worries of the world. It stunts the growth of society and causes various problems such as reduction in public health, increase in mortality, rise in social and domestic traumas, loss of educational and occupational opportunities, involvement with the judicial system, and development of the substance-abuse cycle. Objectives: The aim of this study was to determine the role of metacognition and body image in predicting alexithymia in substance abusers. Patients and Methods: The research sample included addicts (males and females aged 10 to 70 years) who referred to the addiction treatment and counseling centers of three Iranian cities of Zahedan, Sari, and Neyriz. Participants were selected by random sampling. The metacognitive strategy questionnaire (MCQ-30), physical self-description questionnaire (PSDQ), and Toronto alexithymia scale (TAS-20) were used for data collection. The hypotheses were tested using the Pearson’s correlation method and regression analysis. Results: According to the results of the current study, the highest correlation was between alexithymia and the cognitive awareness subscale (r = 0.305; P < 0.01).There was no significant correlation between alexithymia and body image. Based on the multiple regression analysis, the three predictors explained 11% of the variance (R2 = 0. 11, F = 3.981; P < 0.01). Cognitive awareness significantly predicted 9% of the variance (β = 0.305; P < 0.01), and the other subscales predicted about 2%. Conclusions: These findings demonstrated that metacognition had an important role in predicting alexithymia in the substance abusers, which underscores the necessity of precautionary measures. PMID:26495262

  2. When parenting fails: alexithymia and attachment states of mind in mothers of female patients with eating disorders

    PubMed Central

    Pace, Cecilia Serena; Cavanna, Donatella; Guiducci, Valentina; Bizzi, Fabiola

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: In recent years alexithymia and attachment theory have been recognized as two parallel research lines trying to improve the information on the development and maintenance of eating disorders (EDs). However, no research has analyzed these constructs among patients’ families. In this study we compared alexithymia and attachment in mothers of patients with EDs and a control group. Further, we hypothesized that mothers of daughters with EDs with insecure and unresolved states of mind will reported high levels of alexithymia. Lastly, we explored the daughters’ evaluations of maternal alexithymia. Methods: 45 mothers of ED women and 48 mothers of healthy controls (N = 93) matched for age and socio-demographic variables were administered by the Toronto Alexithymia Scale-20 (TAS-20) (S), while two sub-groups of “ED” mothers (n = 20) and “non-ED” ones (n = 22) were assessed by the Adult Attachment Interview (AAI). Moreover, the Observer Alexithymia Scale (OAS) was administered to the daughters for evaluating maternal alexithymia. Results: Regarding alexithymia, no differences were found between ED and non-ED mothers according to the TAS-20, while ED mothers showed more unresolved AAI classifications than non-ED mothers. No correlations were found between the TAS-20 and the AAI. Lastly, ED mothers were evaluated more alexithymic by their daughters with the OAS than those in the control group, and their alexithymic traits were significantly correlated with dismissing states of mind (idealization and lack of memory) in the AAIs. Discussion: Our results highlighted an interesting discrepancy among mothers with ED daughters between the low level of alexithymia provided by their self-reports and the high level of alexithymia observed by their daughters, although the OAS showed severe methodological limitations. Maternal attachment states of mind characterized by the lack of resolution of past losses could be connected to a confusing and incoherent

  3. The relationship between alexithymia, anxiety, depression, and internet addiction severity in a sample of Italian high school students.

    PubMed

    Scimeca, Giuseppe; Bruno, Antonio; Cava, Lucia; Pandolfo, Gianluca; Muscatello, Maria Rosaria Anna; Zoccali, Rocco

    2014-01-01

    We aimed to assess whether Internet addiction (IA) severity was related to alexithymia scores among high school students, taking into account the role of gender differences and the possible effect of anxiety, depression, and age. Participants in the study were 600 students (ages ranging from 13 to 22; 48.16% girls) recruited from three high schools in two cities from Southern Italy. Participants completed a sociodemographic questionnaire, the Toronto Alexithymia Scale, the Internet Addiction Test, the Hamilton Anxiety Scale, and the Hamilton Depression Scale. The findings of the study showed that IA scores were associated with alexithymia scores, over and above the effect of negative emotions and age. Students with pathological levels of alexithymia reported higher scores on IA severity. In particular, results showed that difficulty in identifying feelings was significantly associated with higher scores on IA severity. No effect of gender was found. Implications for clinicians were discussed. PMID:25401143

  4. The Relationship between Alexithymia, Anxiety, Depression, and Internet Addiction Severity in a Sample of Italian High School Students

    PubMed Central

    Scimeca, Giuseppe; Bruno, Antonio; Cava, Lucia; Pandolfo, Gianluca; Muscatello, Maria Rosaria Anna; Zoccali, Rocco

    2014-01-01

    We aimed to assess whether Internet addiction (IA) severity was related to alexithymia scores among high school students, taking into account the role of gender differences and the possible effect of anxiety, depression, and age. Participants in the study were 600 students (ages ranging from 13 to 22; 48.16% girls) recruited from three high schools in two cities from Southern Italy. Participants completed a sociodemographic questionnaire, the Toronto Alexithymia Scale, the Internet Addiction Test, the Hamilton Anxiety Scale, and the Hamilton Depression Scale. The findings of the study showed that IA scores were associated with alexithymia scores, over and above the effect of negative emotions and age. Students with pathological levels of alexithymia reported higher scores on IA severity. In particular, results showed that difficulty in identifying feelings was significantly associated with higher scores on IA severity. No effect of gender was found. Implications for clinicians were discussed. PMID:25401143

  5. Alexithymia Affects Pre-Hospital Delay of Patients with Acute Myocardial Infarction: Meta-Analysis of Existing Studies

    PubMed Central

    Preti, Antonio; Sancassiani, Federica; Cadoni, Federica; Carta, Mauro Giovanni

    2013-01-01

    Background: The time between the onset of symptoms and reperfusion is a critical determinant of the clinical course of patients with acute myocardial infarction (AMI). Any delay in seeking help will affect patient’s outcome. Alexithymia can influence the information processing but also the skills to detect the signal of an ongoing AMI. Method: Systematic review and meta-analysis of studies investigating the role of alexithymia in pre-hospital delay after AMI. Pubmed/Medline and PsychINFO/Ovid search from 1990 until 2012. Results: Out of 29 studies investigating the role of psychological factors in pre-hospital delay after AMI, 3 studies specifically assessed alexithymia, involving 258 patients. All studies used the Toronto Alexithymia Scale to group patients into clusters by time to presentation after AMI. Meta-analysis of data showed that the patients with higher emotional awareness (i.e., low alexithymia) had shorter time to presentation after AMI. Conclusions: Preliminary evidence indicates that alexithymia may have a role in seeking help delay after AMI. Further studies are necessary to better appreciate how alexithymia influence help-seeking in patients with an evolving AMI and in what extent their ineffective behavior can be changed. PMID:23878612

  6. Lack of Association between Oxytocin Receptor (OXTR) Gene Polymorphisms and Alexithymia: Evidence from Patients with Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Koh, Min Jung; Kim, Wonji; Kang, Jee In; Namkoong, Kee; Kim, Se Joo

    2015-01-01

    Oxytocin receptor gene single nucleotide polymorphisms have been associated with structural and functional alterations in brain regions, which involve social-emotional processing. Therefore, oxytocin receptor gene polymorphisms may contribute to individual differences in alexithymia, which is considered to be a dysfunction of emotional processing. The aim of this study was to evaluate the association between oxytocin receptor gene single nucleotide polymorphisms or haplotypes and alexithymia in patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder. We recruited 355 patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (234 men, 121 women). Alexithymia was measured by using the Toronto Alexithymia Scale. We performed single-marker and haplotype association analyses with eight single nucleotide polymorphisms (rs237885, rs237887, rs2268490, rs4686301, rs2254298, rs13316193, rs53576, and rs2268498) in the oxytocin receptor gene. There were no significant associations between any of the eight single nucleotide polymorphism of the oxytocin receptor gene and alexithymia. In addition, a six-locus haplotype block (rs237885-rs237887-rs2268490-rs4686301-rs2254298-rs13316193) was not significantly associated with alexithymia. These findings suggest that genetic variations in the oxytocin receptor gene may not explain a significant part of alexithymia in patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder. PMID:26599592

  7. Alexithymia, empathy, emotion identification and social inference in anorexia nervosa: A case-control study.

    PubMed

    Gramaglia, Carla; Ressico, Francesca; Gambaro, Eleonora; Palazzolo, Anna; Mazzarino, Massimiliano; Bert, Fabrizio; Siliquini, Roberta; Zeppegno, Patrizia

    2016-08-01

    Alexithymia, difficulties in facial emotion recognition, poor socio-relational skills are typical of anorexia nervosa (AN). We assessed patients with AN and healthy controls (HCs) with mixed stimuli: questionnaires (Toronto Alexithymia Scale-TAS, Interpersonal Reactivity Index-IRI), photographs (Facial Emotion Identification Test-FEIT) and dynamic images (The Awareness of Social Inference Test-TASIT). TAS and IRI Personal Distress (PD) were higher in AN than HCs. Few or no differences emerged at the FEIT and TASIT, respectively. Larger effect sizes were found for the TAS results. Despite higher levels of alexithymia, patients with AN seem to properly acknowledge others' emotions while being inhibited in the expression of their own. PMID:27086047

  8. Posttraumatic stress symptoms, dissociation, and alexithymia in an Italian sample of flood victims

    PubMed Central

    Craparo, Giuseppe; Gori, Alessio; Mazzola, Elvira; Petruccelli, Irene; Pellerone, Monica; Rotondo, Giuseppe

    2014-01-01

    Background Several studies have demonstrated a significant association between dissociation and posttraumatic symptoms. A dissociative reaction during a traumatic event may seem to predict the later development of posttraumatic stress symptoms. Moreover, several researchers also observed an alexithymic condition in a variety of traumatized samples. Methods A total of 287 flood victims (men =159, 55.4%; women =128, 44.6%) with an age range of 17–21 years (mean =18.33; standard deviation =0.68) completed the following: Impact of Event Scale–Revised, Dissociative Experiences Scale II, Twenty-Item Toronto Alexithymia Scale, and Peritraumatic Dissociative Experiences Questionnaire. Results We found significant correlations among all variables. Linear regression showed that peritraumatic dissociation plays a mediator role between alexithymia, dissociation, and post-traumatic stress symptoms. Conclusion Our results seem to confirm the significant roles of both dissociation and alexithymia for the development of posttraumatic symptoms. PMID:25489247

  9. A longitudinal mediational study on the stability of alexithymia among alcohol-dependent outpatients in cognitive-behavioral therapy.

    PubMed

    Thorberg, Fred Arne; Young, Ross McD; Sullivan, Karen A; Lyvers, Michael; Hurst, Cameron P; Connor, Jason P; Tyssen, Reidar; London, Edythe D; Noble, Ernest P; Feeney, Gerald F X

    2016-02-01

    Alexithymia is characterized by difficulty identifying feelings, difficulty describing feelings, and an externally oriented thinking style. Alexithymia has been described as a trait-like risk factor for the development of alcohol use disorders. Few studies have investigated the absolute (whether mean scores change over time) and relative (extent to which relative differences among individuals remain the same over time) stability of alexithymia among men and women with alcohol dependence, or have considered potential underlying mechanisms. Social learning processes contribute to and maintain alcohol problems. The reinforcement of alcohol expectancies is one plausible mechanism that links the difficulties in emotional processing associated with alexithymia and alcohol use. The present study investigated the stability of alexithymia as well as alcohol expectancy as a mediator of alexithymia. Three hundred fifty-five alcohol-dependent patients were enrolled in a cognitive behavioral treatment program. Ninety-two alcohol-dependent patients completed assessments at baseline and at 3-month follow-up. Results indicated that total Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20; Bagby, Parker, & Taylor, 1994) mean score, difficulty identifying feelings, and difficulty describing feelings decreased significantly over time with a larger decrease in alexithymia mean scores for females. Externally oriented thinking mean scores did not change. The TAS-20 and its subfactors demonstrated significant correlations, from baseline to follow-up, which were stronger for males than for females. Regression analyses showed that the total TAS-20 mean scores, difficulty identifying feelings, and difficulty describing feelings were partially mediated through assertion alcohol expectancies. In conclusion, this suggests that alexithymia has relative stability and is a trait-like factor among alcohol-dependent treatment seekers. PMID:26795394

  10. Perceived Stress, Alexithymia, and Psychological Health as Predictors of Sedative Abuse

    PubMed Central

    Gilan, Nader Rajabi; Reshadat, Sohyla; Komasi, Saeid; Ghasemi, Seyed Ramin

    2015-01-01

    Background The harmful effects of sedative medications and substances in conjunction with limited research regarding predictive psychological constructs of drug abuse necessitate further investigation of associated factors. Therefore, the present study aimed to elucidate the roles of perceived stress, alexithymia, and psychological health as predictors of sedative abuse in medical students. Methods In this cross-sectional study, 548 students at Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Iran, were selected using stratified random sampling. The data were obtained using the Perceived Stress Scale, an alexithymia scale (Farsi version of the Toronto Alexithymia Scale-20), and a General Health Questionnaire to assess psychological health. Data were analyzed using discriminant analyses. Results The results demonstrated that the user and non-user of sedative substances groups had significantly different predictive variables (except for social function disorder) (P>0.05). Physical complaints, alexithymia, and perceived stress, which had standard coefficients of 0.80, 0.60, and -0.27, respectively, predicted sedative drug use. Conclusion The results of the present study indicate that perceived stress, alexithymia, physical complaints, anxiety, and depression are associated with sedative drug abuse. PMID:26435810

  11. A behavioral-genetic study of alexithymia and its relationships with trait emotional intelligence.

    PubMed

    Baughman, Holly M; Schwartz, Sara; Schermer, Julie Aitken; Veselka, Livia; Petrides, K V; Vernon, Philip A

    2011-12-01

    The present study is the first to examine relationships between alexithymia and trait emotional intelligence (trait El or trait emotional self-efficacy) at the phenotypic, genetic, and environmental levels. The study was also conducted to resolve inconsistencies in previous twin studies that have provided estimates of the extent to which genetic and environmental factors contribute to individual differences in alexithymia. Participants were 216 monozygotic and 45 dizygotic same-sex twin pairs who completed the Toronto Alexithymia Scale-20. In a pilot study, a sub-sample of 118 MZ and 27 DZ pairs also completed the Trait Emotional Intelligence Questionnaire. Results demonstrated that a combination of genetic and non-shared environmental influences contribute to individual differences in alexithymia. As expected, alexithymia and trait El were negatively correlated at the phenotypic level. Bivariate behavioral genetic analyses showed that that all but one of these correlations was primarily attributable to correlated genetic factors and secondarily to correlated non-shared environmental factors. PMID:22506309

  12. Relationship of internet addiction severity with depression, anxiety, and alexithymia, temperament and character in university students.

    PubMed

    Dalbudak, Ercan; Evren, Cuneyt; Aldemir, Secil; Coskun, Kerem Senol; Ugurlu, Hilal; Yildirim, Fatma Gul

    2013-04-01

    The aim of the study was to investigate the relationship of Internet addiction (IA) severity with alexithymia, temperament, and character dimensions of personality in university students while controlling for the effect of depression and anxiety. A total of 319 university students from two conservative universities in Ankara volunteered for the study. Students were investigated using the Toronto Alexithymia Scale-20, the Temperament and Character Inventory, the Internet Addiction Scale, the Beck Anxiety Inventory, and the Beck Depression Inventory. Of the university students enrolled in the study, 12.2 percent (n=39) were categorized into the moderate/high IA group (IA 7.2 percent, high risk 5.0 percent), 25.7 percent (n=82) were categorized into the mild IA group, and 62.1 percent (n=198) were categorized into the group without IA. Results revealed that the rate of moderate/high IA group membership was higher in men (20.0 percent) than women (9.4 percent). Alexithymia, depression, anxiety, and novelty seeking (NS) scores were higher; whereas self-directedness (SD) and cooperativeness (C) scores were lower in the moderate/high IA group. The severity of IA was positively correlated with alexithymia, whereas it was negatively correlated with SD. The "difficulty in identifying feelings" and "difficulty in describing feelings" factors of alexithymia, the low C and high NS dimensions of personality were associated with the severity of IA. The direction of this relationship between alexithymia and IA, and the factors that may mediate this relationship are unclear. Nevertheless, university students exhibiting high alexithymia and NS scores, along with low character scores (SD and C) should be closely monitored for IA. PMID:23363230

  13. Repressive coping and alexithymia in idiopathic environmental intolerance

    PubMed Central

    Zachariae, Robert; Rasmussen, Alice; Johansen, Jeanne Duus; Elberling, Jesper

    2010-01-01

    Objective To examine if the non-expression of negative emotions (i.e., repressive coping) and differences in the ability to process and regulate emotions (i.e., alexithymia) is associated with idiopathic environmental intolerance (IEI). Methods The study included participants who had previously participated in a general population-based study and reported symptoms of environmental intolerance (n = 787) and patients with IEI (n = 237). The participants completed questionnaires assessing IEI, namely, a measure of repressive coping combining scores on the Marlowe–Crowne Social Desirability Scale (MCSDS) and the Taylor Manifest Anxiety Scale (TMAS), the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), and a negative affectivity scale (NAS). Multiple, hierarchical linear regression analyses were conducted using IEI variables as the dependent variables. Results The TMAS and MCSDS scores were independently associated with the IEI variables, but there was no evidence of a role of the repressive coping construct. While the total alexithymia score was unrelated to IEI, the TAS-20 subscale of difficulties identifying feelings (DIF) was independently associated with symptoms attributed to IEI. Negative affectivity was a strong independent predictor of the IEI variables and a mediator of the association between DIF and IEI. Conclusion Our results provide no evidence for a role of repressive coping in IEI, and our hypothesis of an association with alexithymia was only partly supported. In contrast, strong associations between IEI and negative emotional reactions, defensiveness and difficulties identifying feelings were found, suggesting a need for exploring the influence of these emotional reactions in IEI. PMID:21432559

  14. Alexithymia, anger and psychological distress in patients with myofascial pain: a case-control study

    PubMed Central

    Castelli, Lorys; De Santis, Federica; De Giorgi, Ilaria; Deregibus, Andrea; Tesio, Valentina; Leombruni, Paolo; Granieri, Antonella; Debernardi, Cesare; Torta, Riccardo

    2013-01-01

    Aims: The aim of this study was to investigate psychological distress, anger and alexithymia in a group of patients affected by myofascial pain (MP) in the facial region. Methods: 45 MP patients [mean (SD) age: 38.9 (11.6)] and 45 female healthy controls [mean (SD) age: 37.8 (13.7)] were assessed medically and psychologically. The medically evaluation consisted of muscle palpation of the pericranial and cervical muscles. The psychological evaluation included the assessment of depression (Beck Depression Inventory—short form), anxiety [State-Trait Anxiety Inventory Form Y (STAI-Y)], emotional distress [Distress Thermometer (DT)], anger [State-Trait Anger Expression Inventory—2 (STAXI-2)], and alexithymia [Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS)]. Results: the MP patients showed significantly higher scores in the depression, anxiety and emotional distress inventories. With regard to anger, only the Anger Expression-In scale showed a significant difference between the groups, with higher scores for the MP patients. In addition, the MP patients showed significantly higher alexithymic scores, in particular in the Difficulty in identifying feelings (F1) subscale of the TAS-20. Alexithymia was positively correlated with the Anger Expression-In scale. Both anger and alexithymia showed significant positive correlations with anxiety scores, but only anger was positively correlated with depression. Conclusion: A higher prevalence of depressive and anxiety symptoms associated with a higher prevalence of alexithymia and expression-in modality to cope with anger was found in the MP patients. Because the presence of such psychological aspects could contribute to generate or exacerbate the suffering of these patients, our results highlight the need to include accurate investigation of psychological aspects in MP patients in normal clinical practice in order to allow clinicians to carry out more efficacious management and treatment strategies. PMID:23914181

  15. Comparing Sensory Information Processing and Alexithymia between People with Substance Dependency and Normal

    PubMed Central

    Bashapoor, Sajjad; Hosseini-Kiasari, Seyyedeh Tayebeh; Daneshvar, Somayeh; Kazemi-Taskooh, Zeinab

    2015-01-01

    Background Sensory information processing and alexithymia are two important factors in determining behavioral reactions. Some studies explain the effect of the sensitivity of sensory processing and alexithymia in the tendency to substance abuse. Giving that, the aim of the current study was to compare the styles of sensory information processing and alexithymia between substance-dependent people and normal ones. Methods The research method was cross-sectional and the statistical population of the current study comprised of all substance-dependent men who are present in substance quitting camps of Masal, Iran, in October 2013 (n = 78). 36 persons were selected randomly by simple randomly sampling method from this population as the study group, and 36 persons were also selected among the normal population in the same way as the comparison group. Both groups was evaluated by using Toronto alexithymia scale (TAS) and adult sensory profile, and the multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) test was applied to analyze data. Findings The results showed that there are significance differences between two groups in low registration (P < 0.020, F = 5.66), sensation seeking (P < 0.050, F = 1.92), and sensory avoidance (P < 0.008, F = 7.52) as a components of sensory processing and difficulty in describing emotions (P < 0.001, F = 15.01) and difficulty in identifying emotions (P < 0.002, F = 10.54) as a components of alexithymia. However, no significant difference were found between two groups in components of sensory sensitivity (P < 0.170, F = 1.92) and external oriented thinking style (P < 0.060, F = 3.60). Conclusion These results showed that substance-dependent people process sensory information in a different way than normal people and show more alexithymia features than them. PMID:26885354

  16. Chronic idiopathic urticaria, psychological co-morbidity and posttraumatic stress: the impact of alexithymia and repression.

    PubMed

    Hunkin, Victoria; Chung, Man Cheung

    2012-12-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the interrelationship between chronic idiopathic urticaria (CIU), psychological co-morbidity, posttraumatic stress, repression and alexithymia. 89 participants with CIU and 105 without CIU responded to an online questionnaire. Both groups completed the general health questionnaire-12, the perceived stress scale, the posttraumatic stress diagnostic scale and the Toronto alexithymia scale-20 and were categorised into four defence mechanism groups (repressive, defensive, high-anxious, low-anxious). CIU participants also completed the Skindex-17 and a self-report severity measure. CIU participants reported higher levels of alexithymia than the control group and their defence mechanism was most likely to be categorised as defensive, with conscious self-image management reported alongside high manifest anxiety. Partial least squares analysis revealed significant paths between posttraumatic stress and CIU severity and psychological co-morbidity. Posttraumatic stress was associated with alexithymia and type of defence mechanism. Only being in the high-anxious group partially mediated the relationship between posttraumatic stress and CIU severity. In conclusion, there is evidence for a relationship between CIU and trauma. The severity of posttraumatic symptoms varies depending upon alexithymic traits and defence mechanisms used. Disease severity and psychological co-morbidity are differentially influenced by the relationships between trauma, alexithymic traits and defence mechanisms. PMID:22362490

  17. Disordered eating attitudes, alexithymia and suicide probability among Turkish high school girls.

    PubMed

    Alpaslan, Ahmet Hamdi; Soylu, Nusret; Avci, Kadriye; Coşkun, Kerem Şenol; Kocak, Uğur; Taş, Hanife Uzel

    2015-03-30

    We aimed to examine association between disordered eating attitudes (DEAs), alexithymia and suicide probability among adolescent females and to explore potential link between alexithymia and suicide probability in subjects with DEAs. 381 female students completed Eating Attitude Test (EAT-26), Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20) and Suicide Probability Scale (SPS). It was found that 13.2% (n=52) of the subjects have DEAs. Results indicated that total TAS-20 score and scores of Difficulty in Identifying Feelings (DIF) and Difficulty in Describing Feelings (DDF) subscales were significantly higher in DEAs group than in those non DEAs group (p<0.05). Additionally, total SPS score (p<0.001), Hopelessness (p=0.001), Suicide Ideation (p<0.001) and Hostility (p=0.003) subscales scores of SPS were significantly higher in the alexithymic DEAs than the non-alexithymic DEAs group. In order to control potential effect of depression, SPS subscales were used as covariate factors in ANCOVA. Negative Self-Evaluation subscale yielded a statistically significant difference between groups, other subscales did not. Results point out these; DEAs are relatively frequent phenomenon among female students in Turkey and presence of alexithymia was associated with an increased suicide probability in adolescents with DEAs. The results should be evaluated taking into account that depressive symptomatology was not assessed using a depression scale. PMID:25619436

  18. Alexithymia, suicide risk and serum lipid levels among adult outpatients with panic disorder.

    PubMed

    De Berardis, Domenico; Campanella, Daniela; Serroni, Nicola; Moschetta, Francesco Saverio; Di Emidio, Fabiola; Conti, Chiara; Carano, Alessandro; Acciavatti, Tiziano; Di Iorio, Giuseppe; Martinotti, Giovanni; Siracusano, Alberto; Di Giannantonio, Massimo

    2013-07-01

    To elucidate the relationships between alexithymia, suicide ideation and serum lipid levels in drug-naïve adult outpatients with a DSM-IV diagnosis of Panic Disorder (PD), 72 patients were evaluated. Measures were the Panic Attack and Anticipatory Anxiety Scale, the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), the Scale of Suicide Ideation (SSI) and the Montgomery Åsberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS). Alexithymic patients showed higher scores on all rating scales and altered serum lipid levels than non-alexithymics. In the hierarchical regression model, the presence of lower HDL-C and higher VLDL-C levels and Difficulty in Identifying Feelings dimension of TAS-20 were associated with higher suicide ideation. In conclusion, alexithymic individuals with PD may show a cholesterol dysregulation that may be linked to suicide ideation. The authors discuss study limitations and future research needs. PMID:23332553

  19. Report Card on Child Poverty in Toronto. Toronto Campaign 2000.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hughes, Colin

    This report provides detailed information on the child poverty rates in Toronto from 1990 to 1998. The report card offers income data for Toronto, Ontario, Canada. It includes new income data for Toronto from the Family Databank of Statistics Canada. This databank uses information reported by all income tax filers and from the Canada Child Tax…

  20. Latina Landscape: Queer Toronto

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jimenez, Karleen Pendleton

    2008-01-01

    A group of Latinas sat down one day around a wooden table on the third floor of a downtown Toronto community center, lit candles and began to write. They came together through a flier inviting all Latinas interested in writing. On the second meeting, they named themselves Lengua Latina (Latin Tongue). Lengua Latina is a structure established by…

  1. Toronto's Postwar Urban Environment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hitchcock, John

    1984-01-01

    Discusses Toronto's postwar development as measured by: population growth patterns; households; families; age structure; dwelling type; and labor force participation. Growth rings based on municipal boundaries are used as the basis for all analyses. Policy issues related to physical/social environment and women's role related to urban growth are…

  2. [Obesity, alexithymia, psychopathology and binge eating: a comparative study of 40 obese patients and 32 controls].

    PubMed

    De Chouly De Lenclave, M B; Florequin, C; Bailly, D

    2001-01-01

    Alexithymia may be considered as a personality feature characterized by poorness of imaginary life, speech focused on actual facts and physical sensations, general inaccuracy in or paucity of the words used to express emotions, and recourse to acting out to avoid intrapsychic conflicts. The possible link between alexithymia and psychosomatic or psychopathological disorders is now well documented. In particular, studies suggested that alexithymia may be frequently observed in obese or bulimic patients. This study was designed to investigate the link between obesity and alexithymia according to the presence or not of binge eating problems; 40 obese female patients (BMI > or = 27.3) seeking obesity treatment and 32 normal weight women used as controls were included in the study. In the obese group, 11 patients (27.5%) exhibited binge-eating disorder according to the DSM IV criteria. Alexithymia was assessed using the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS), and past and current mental disorders were assessed by means of the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM III-R (SCID). In addition, current depression was assessed using the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI). The mean TAS score was found significantly higher in obese patients than in controls (72.6 +/- 11.8 vs 65.2 +/- 9.3, respectively; p < 0.005). In the same way, alexithymia (defined by TAS score > or = 74) was found significantly more frequent in obese patients than in controls (52.5% vs 21.8%, respectively; p < 0.03). However, among obese patients no significant difference was found between patients with and without binge-eating disorder. Current major depression was also found significantly more frequent in obese patients than in controls (15% vs 0%, respectively; p < 0.03), and the mean BDI score was very significantly higher in obese patients (12.2 +/- 8.7 vs 4.6 +/- 4.6, respectively; p < 0.0001). Comparisons between obese patients with and without binge-eating disorder showed that only past major depression was

  3. RELATIONSHIPS AMONG ALEXITHYMIA AND PAIN INTENSITY, PAIN INTERFERENCE, AND VITALITY IN PERSONS WITH NEUROMUSCULAR DISEASE: CONSIDERING THE EFFECT OF NEGATIVE AFFECTIVITY

    PubMed Central

    Hosoi, Masako; Molton, Ivan R.; Jensen, Mark P.; Ehde, Dawn M.; Amtmann, Silvia; O’Brien, Sarah; Arimura, Tatsuyuki; Kubo, Chiharu

    2010-01-01

    Alexithymia, the inability to identify or label emotions, has been shown to be associated with pain in patients with a number of chronic pain conditions. We sought to: (1) replicate this association in samples of persons with chronic pain secondary to neuromuscular disease; (2) extend this finding to other important pain-related measures, and (3) to determine whether relationships among alexithymia and study variables existed after controlling for negative affect. One hundred and twenty-nine individuals with muscular dystrophy and chronic pain were administered measures of alexithymia (Toronto Alexithymia Scale, TAS-20), pain intensity (0–10 NRS), pain interference (Brief Pain Inventory Interference scale), mental health (SF-36 Mental Health scale; as a proxy measure of negative affect) and vitality (SF-36 Vitality scale). Higher TAS scores were associated significantly with higher pain intensity and interference, and less vitality. Although the strengths of these associations were reduced when mental health was used as a control, the associations between the Difficulty Identifying Feelings scale and vitality, and the Externally Oriented Thinking and Total TAS scales and pain intensity remained statistically significant. The findings replicate and extend previous findings concerning the associations between alexithymia and important pain-related variables in a sample of persons with chronic pain and neuromuscular disease. Future research is needed to determine the extent to which the associations are due to (1) a possible causal effect of alexithymia on patient functioning that is mediated via its effects on negative affect or (2) the possibility that alexithymia/outcome relationships reflect response bias caused by general negative affectivity. PMID:20207082

  4. A Behavior Analytic Interpretation of Alexithymia.

    PubMed

    Darrow, Sabrina M; Follette, William C

    2014-04-01

    Alexithymia is a term used to describe individuals who seem unable to experience or at least describe emotions. This paper offers a theoretical interpretation of alexithymia from a radical behaviorist perspective. While there have been attempts to explain the etiology of alexithymia, the current analysis is unique in that it provides direct treatment implications. The pragmatic analysis described focuses on the verbal behavior of individuals rather than looking "inside" for explanations. This is supported by a review of experimental research that has failed to find consistencies among alexithymic individuals' physiological responding. Descriptions of the various discriminative and consequential stimulus conditions involved in the complex learning histories of individuals that could result in an alexithymic presentation are provided. This analysis helps situate the alexithymia construct in a broader behavior analytic understanding of emotions. Finally this paper outlines implications for assessment and treatment, which involve influencing discriminative and consequential interpersonal stimulus conditions to shape verbal behavior about emotions. PMID:25473602

  5. A Behavior Analytic Interpretation of Alexithymia

    PubMed Central

    Darrow, Sabrina M.; Follette, William C.

    2014-01-01

    Alexithymia is a term used to describe individuals who seem unable to experience or at least describe emotions. This paper offers a theoretical interpretation of alexithymia from a radical behaviorist perspective. While there have been attempts to explain the etiology of alexithymia, the current analysis is unique in that it provides direct treatment implications. The pragmatic analysis described focuses on the verbal behavior of individuals rather than looking “inside” for explanations. This is supported by a review of experimental research that has failed to find consistencies among alexithymic individuals’ physiological responding. Descriptions of the various discriminative and consequential stimulus conditions involved in the complex learning histories of individuals that could result in an alexithymic presentation are provided. This analysis helps situate the alexithymia construct in a broader behavior analytic understanding of emotions. Finally this paper outlines implications for assessment and treatment, which involve influencing discriminative and consequential interpersonal stimulus conditions to shape verbal behavior about emotions. PMID:25473602

  6. A brief 20-item dental/medical health literacy screen (REALMD-20)

    PubMed Central

    Gironda, Melanie; Der-Martirosian, Claudia; Messadi, Diana; Holtzman, Jennifer; Atchison, Kathryn

    2013-01-01

    Objectives Few health literacy instruments are available to clinicians to help understand the implications of patient difficulty understanding health information. Those that do exist are lengthy and would not be conducive to use in a busy clinical setting. Long-term dental and medical outcomes may improve if health care providers can identify individuals with low health literacy levels who may benefit from tailored communication, yet few instruments are available for clinical use. The purpose of this study is to introduce a brief 20-item screener for limited dental/medical health literacy among adult dental patients. Methods Two-hundred adult patients seeking treatment at a dental clinic in a large medical complex completed a health literacy screening instrument and survey. Steps in the development of the 20-item instrument are described. Comparison of the 20-item dental/medical instrument with other health literacy measures are calculated using mean health literacy scores, tests of reliability and readability, and correlation coefficients. Results Scores on the brief 20-item measure varied significantly by race, education level, language use, needing help with medical/health materials forms. Those with lower dental/medical health literacy, as measured by the REALMD-20 were less likely to receive regular follow-up care than those with higher literacy. Conclusions The REALMD-20 is a quick screening instrument that can be used by clinicians to detect limited dental/medical health literacy among adult patients seeking treatment in dental/medical clinic settings. PMID:23293880

  7. Alexithymia in eating disorders: therapeutic implications

    PubMed Central

    Pinna, Federica; Sanna, Lucia; Carpiniello, Bernardo

    2015-01-01

    A high percentage of individuals affected by eating disorders (ED) achieve incomplete recovery following treatment. In an attempt to improve treatment outcome, it is crucial that predictors of outcome are identified, and personalized care approaches established in line with new treatment targets, thus facilitating patient access to evidence-based treatments. Among the psychological factors proposed as predictors of outcome in ED, alexithymia is of outstanding interest. The objective of this paper is to undertake a systematic review of the literature relating to alexithymia, specifically in terms of the implications for treatment of ED. In particular, issues concerning the role of alexithymia as a predictor of outcome and as a factor to be taken into account in the choice of treatment will be addressed. The effect of treatments on alexithymia will also be considered. A search of all relevant literature published in English using PubMed, PsycINFO, and Scopus databases was carried out on the basis of the following keywords: alexithymia, anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, eating disorders, and treatment; no time limits were imposed. Despite the clinical relevance of alexithymia, the number of studies published on the above cited aspects is somewhat limited, and these studies are largely heterogeneous and feature significant methodological weaknesses. Overall, data currently available mostly correlate higher levels of alexithymia with a less favorable outcome in ED. Accordingly, alexithymia is seen as a relevant treatment target with the aim of achieving recovery of these patients. Treatments focusing on improving alexithymic traits, and specifically those targeting emotions, seem to show greater efficacy, although alexithymia levels often remain high even after specific treatment. Further investigations are needed to overcome the methodological limitations of previous studies, to understand the actual impact of alexithymia on ED outcome, and to allow more precise

  8. Somatic Symptoms Evoked by Exam Stress in University Students: The Role of Alexithymia, Neuroticism, Anxiety and Depression

    PubMed Central

    Zunhammer, Matthias; Eberle, Hanna; Eichhammer, Peter; Busch, Volker

    2013-01-01

    Objective The etiology of somatization is incompletely understood, but could be elucidated by models of psychosocial stress. Academic exam stress has effectively been applied as a naturalistic stress model, however its effect on somatization symptoms according to ICD-10 and DSM-IV criteria has not been reported so far. Baseline associations between somatization and personality traits, such as alexithymia, have been studied exhaustively. Nevertheless, it is largely unknown if personality traits have an explanatory value for stress induced somatization. Methods This longitudinal, quasi-experimental study assessed the effects of university exams on somatization — and the reversal of effects after an exam-free period. Repeated-observations were obtained within 150 students, measuring symptom intensity before, during and after an exam period, according to the Screening for Somatoform Symptoms 7-day (SOMS-7d). Additionally, self-reports on health status were used to differentiate between medically explained and medically unexplained symptoms. Alexithymia, neuroticism, trait-anxiety and baseline depression were surveyed using the Toronto-Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), the Big-Five Personality Interview (NEO-FFI), the State Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI) and Beck’s Depression Inventory (BDI-II). These traits were competitively tested for their ability to explain somatization increases under exam stress. Results Somatization significantly increased across a wide range of symptoms under exam stress, while health reports pointed towards a reduction in acute infections and injuries. Neuroticism, alexithymia, trait anxiety and depression explained variance in somatization at baseline, but only neuroticism was associated with symptom increases under exam stress. Conclusion Exam stress is an effective psychosocial stress model inducing somatization. A comprehensive quantitative description of bodily symptoms under exam stress is supplied. The results do not support the stress-alexithymia

  9. The impact of self-efficacy, alexithymia and multiple traumas on posttraumatic stress disorder and psychiatric co-morbidity following epileptic seizures: a moderated mediation analysis.

    PubMed

    Chung, Man Cheung; Allen, Rachel D; Dennis, Ian

    2013-12-30

    This study investigated the incidence of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and psychiatric co-morbidity following epileptic seizure, whether alexithymia mediated the relationship between self-efficacy and psychiatric outcomes, and whether the mediational effect was moderated by the severity of PTSD from other traumas. Seventy-one (M=31, F=40) people with a diagnosis of epilepsy recruited from support groups in the United Kingdom completed the Posttraumatic Stress Diagnostic Scale, the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, the Toronto Alexithymia Scale-20 and the Generalized Self-Efficacy Scale. They were compared with 71 people (M=29, F=42) without epilepsy. For people with epilepsy, 51% and 22% met the diagnostic criteria for post-epileptic seizure PTSD and for PTSD following one other traumatic life event respectively. For the control group, 24% met the diagnostic criteria for PTSD following other traumatic life events. The epilepsy group reported significantly more anxiety and depression than the control. Partial least squares (PLS) analysis showed that self-efficacy was significantly correlated with alexithymia, post-epileptic seizure PTSD and psychiatric co-morbidity. Alexithymia was also significantly correlated with post-epileptic seizure PTSD and psychiatric co-morbidity. Mediation analyses confirmed that alexithymia mediated the path between self-efficacy and post-epileptic seizure PTSD and psychiatric co-morbidity. Moderated mediation also confirmed that self-efficacy and PTSD from one other trauma moderated the effect of alexithymia on outcomes. To conclude, people can develop posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms and psychiatric co-morbidity following epileptic seizure. These psychiatric outcomes are closely linked with their belief in personal competence to deal with stressful situations and regulate their own functioning, to process rather than defend against distressing emotions, and with the degree of PTSD from other traumas. PMID:23978734

  10. Alexithymia and its relationships with body checking and body image in a non-clinical female sample.

    PubMed

    De Berardis, Domenico; Carano, Alessandro; Gambi, Francesco; Campanella, Daniela; Giannetti, Paola; Ceci, Anna; Mancini, Enrico; La Rovere, Raffaella; Cicconetti, Alessandra; Penna, Laura; Di Matteo, Danilo; Scorrano, Barbara; Cotellessa, Carla; Salerno, Rosa Maria; Serroni, Nicola; Ferro, Filippo Maria

    2007-08-01

    The aim of the present study was to evaluate in a non-clinical sample of undergraduate women, the relationships between alexithymia, body checking and body image, identifying predictive factors associated with the possible risk of developing an Eating Disorder (ED). The Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), Body Checking Questionnaire (BCQ), Eating Attitudes Test (EAT-26), Body Shape Questionnaire (BSQ), Interaction Anxiousness Scale (IAS), Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (RSES) and the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) were completed by 254 undergraduate females. We found that alexithymics had more consistent body checking behaviors and higher body dissatisfaction than nonalexithymics. In addition, alexithymics also reported a higher potential risk for ED (higher scores on EAT-26) when compared to nonalexithymics. Difficulty in identifying and describing feelings subscales of TAS-20, Overall appearance and Specific Body Parts subscales of BCQ as well as lower self-esteem was associated with higher ED risk in a linear regression analysis. Thus, a combination of alexithymia, low self-esteem, body checking behaviors and body dissatisfaction may be a risk factor for symptoms of ED at least in a non-clinical sample of university women. PMID:17606227

  11. Stress levels, Alexithymia, Type A and Type C personality patterns in undergraduate students

    PubMed Central

    Bobîrnac, G; Tipa, R

    2010-01-01

    Introduction: Since there have been a number of empirical observations that may lead to the conclusion of an increasing rate of risk behaviors in Romanian students, such as aggression, over–competitive conduct and lack of collaboration, immorality, peer pressure and even an increasing rate of suicide, and suicide attempts, we have undergone a study to indentify if there is a high rate of risk type personality patterns that may lead to these deportments. Material and methods: We have selected a total number of 500 students from the three largest universities in Bucharest, Romania–‘Carol Davila’ University of Medicine and Pharmacy (UMF), Bucharest Polytechnics University (UPB), and the Bucharest Academy of Economical Studies (ASE). All subjects received a questionnaire containing four diagnostic tools and several demographics questions. We have chosen the Twenty Item Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS20), the Jenkins Activity Survey (JAS–13) and the Anger–In Questionnaire for type C personality pattern. We have also added the Columbia stress analysis questionnaire for the evaluation of stress levels and coping capacity at the moment the subjects were interviewed. Results: Columbia stress survey results confirm that there is a high stress level among students of all universities, but a more detailed stratification by university, gender and analyzed factor shows a very high F factor and T factor positive responses. Alexithymia, Type A and Type C personality patterns show a much higher prevalence than the general population, especially in medical students. We have found higher frequencies in men for all of the three studied parameters. Conclusions: Approaching alexithymia and type A behavior both by cognitive methods and by assessing and addressing consequential risk factors should become an issue among universities. PMID:20968210

  12. Alexithymia and Affect Intensity of Fine Artists

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Botella, Marion; Zenasni, Franck; Lubart, Todd

    2015-01-01

    Research on creative artists has examined mainly their personality traits or cognitive abilities. However, it seems important to explore also their emotional traits to complete the profile. This study examines two emotional characteristics: alexithymia and affect intensity. Even if most research suggests that artists are less alexithymic and…

  13. Alexithymia, not autism, is associated with impaired interoception.

    PubMed

    Shah, Punit; Hall, Richard; Catmur, Caroline; Bird, Geoffrey

    2016-08-01

    It has been proposed that Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is associated with difficulties perceiving the internal state of one's body (i.e., impaired interoception), causing the socio-emotional deficits which are a diagnostic feature of the condition. However, research indicates that alexithymia - characterized by difficulties in recognizing emotions from internal bodily sensations - is also linked to atypical interoception. Elevated rates of alexithymia in the autistic population have been shown to underpin several socio-emotional impairments thought to be symptomatic of ASD, raising the possibility that interoceptive difficulties in ASD are also due to co-occurring alexithymia. Following this line of inquiry, the present study examined the relative impact of alexithymia and autism on interoceptive accuracy (IA). Across two experiments, it was found that alexithymia, not autism, was associated with atypical interoception. Results indicate that interoceptive impairments should not be considered a feature of ASD, but instead due to co-occurring alexithymia. PMID:27253723

  14. Teaching to Teach in Toronto

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dang, Kien; Waddell, Andrea E.; Lofchy, Jodi

    2010-01-01

    Objective: The training objectives for postgraduate education in the United States and Canada both state that teaching skills should be formally developed during training. This article reviews the development of the Teaching-to-Teach program at the University of Toronto Department of Psychiatry, the current curriculum, evaluation, and future…

  15. Is there a psychoneuroimmunological pathway between alexithymia and immunity? Immune and physiological correlates of alexithymia.

    PubMed

    Guilbaud, Olivier; Corcos, Maurice; Hjalmarsson, Linnea; Loas, Gwenolé; Jeammet, Philippe

    2003-09-01

    The term "alexithymia" was coined by Sifneos. It is characterised by a lack of words to express emotion (a: absence of; lexi: words; thymia: emotions, affects). Its characteristics were suggested to occur more frequently in individuals with so-called "psychosomatic disorders", but this is still a matter of controversy. Here we review the psychosomatic network of alexithymia, i.e. the immune and physiological correlates of alexithymia. Some studies suggest that inaccuracy in recognising emotional states, or the way of coping with negative emotions, may influence immune function. Alexithymia is associated with higher tonic baseline levels of sympathetic activity and lower sympathetic reactivity during acute stress. Few studies have reported a diminished immune-mediated cellular response in alexithymics with oversecretion of glucocorticoids. We hypothesise that alexithymic subjects may suffer from unnoticed chronic stress with physiological and endocrine and immune consequences. Alexithymia may skew the Th-1/Th-2 balance toward Th-2 dominant immunity and lower cell-mediated (Th-1) immune response and may increase an individual's risk for stress-related disorder. PMID:14499176

  16. The 20 item prosopagnosia index (PI20): relationship with the Glasgow face-matching test

    PubMed Central

    Sowden, Sophie; Gaule, Anne; Bird, Geoffrey

    2015-01-01

    The 20 item prosopagnosia index (PI20) was recently developed to identify individuals with developmental prosopagnosia. While the PI20’s principal purpose is to aid researchers and clinicians, it was suggested that it may serve as a useful screening tool to identify people with face recognition difficulties in applied settings where face matching is a critical part of their occupation. Although the PI20 has been validated using behavioural measures of face recognition, it has yet to be validated against a measure of face-matching ability that is more representative of applied settings. In this study, the PI20 was therefore administered with the Glasgow face-matching test (GFMT). A strong correlation was observed between PI20 and GFMT scores, providing further validation for the PI20, indicating that it is likely to be of value in applied settings. PMID:26715995

  17. Alexithymia in Parents of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Szatmari, Peter; Georgiades, Stelios; Duku, Eric; Zwaigenbaum, Lonnie; Goldberg, Jeremy; Bennett, Terry

    2008-01-01

    Given the recent findings regarding the association between alexithymia and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and the accumulating evidence for the presence of the Broader Autism Phenotype (BAP) in relatives of individuals with ASD, we further explored the construct of alexithymia in parents of children with ASD as a potential part of the BAP. We…

  18. Alexithymia in children with and without autism spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Griffin, Cáit; Lombardo, Michael V; Auyeung, Bonnie

    2016-07-01

    Alexithymia refers to pronounced difficulty in identifying and describing one's own emotions and is associated with an externally oriented focus of thinking. Alexithymia is known to be much more common in adults with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) compared with the typically developing (TD) adult population. However, we know very little about alexithymia in young children with ASD and advancing our understanding of this topic may be of critical clinical and translational importance. Here, we present the first study to examine alexithymia in children with ASD. We find that alexithymia is substantially elevated in ASD on both self- and parent-report measures. Despite both measures being sensitive to on-average group differentiation, we find no evidence of correlation between such measures, indicating that children and their parents may be using different sources of information. Parent-rated alexithymia is also associated with increasing levels of autistic traits. Discrepancy between self and other alexithymia ratings are also associated with autistic traits, but only in ASD. These results underscore the idea that assessing alexithymia in ASD at younger ages may help identify important subgroups that have particular difficulties in the domain of emotion processing. Autism Res 2016, 9: 773-780. © 2015 International Society for Autism Research, Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26426084

  19. The relationship between self-harm and alexithymia.

    PubMed

    Norman, Hilary; Borrill, Jo

    2015-08-01

    This paper presents a systematic review of the literature concerning the relationship between alexithymia and self-harm. Fifteen studies were selected following a systematic search of relevant databases. Results indicate significantly higher levels of alexithymia in women who self-harm compared with women who do not self-harm. Studies of men were less conclusive and require further investigation. A subsample of the studies found that childhood abuse and bullying were more likely to be associated with self-harm if alexithymia was present as a mediator. Other studies found that depression mediated between alexithymia and self-harm. The results indicate that the poor emotional cognition and expression associated with alexithymia may increase vulnerability to self-harm, particularly in women. PMID:26011069

  20. The 20-item prosopagnosia index (PI20): a self-report instrument for identifying developmental prosopagnosia

    PubMed Central

    Shah, Punit; Gaule, Anne; Sowden, Sophie; Bird, Geoffrey; Cook, Richard

    2015-01-01

    Self-report plays a key role in the identification of developmental prosopagnosia (DP), providing complementary evidence to computer-based tests of face recognition ability, aiding interpretation of scores. However, the lack of standardized self-report instruments has contributed to heterogeneous reporting standards for self-report evidence in DP research. The lack of standardization prevents comparison across samples and limits investigation of the relationship between objective tests of face processing and self-report measures. To address these issues, this paper introduces the PI20; a 20-item self-report measure for quantifying prosopagnosic traits. The new instrument successfully distinguishes suspected prosopagnosics from typically developed adults. Strong correlations were also observed between PI20 scores and performance on objective tests of familiar and unfamiliar face recognition ability, confirming that people have the necessary insight into their own face recognition ability required by a self-report instrument. Importantly, PI20 scores did not correlate with recognition of non-face objects, indicating that the instrument measures face recognition, and not a general perceptual impairment. These results suggest that the PI20 can play a valuable role in identifying DP. A freely available self-report instrument will permit more effective description of self-report diagnostic evidence, thereby facilitating greater comparison of prosopagnosic samples, and more reliable classification. PMID:26543567

  1. Alexithymia, not autism, predicts poor recognition of emotional facial expressions.

    PubMed

    Cook, Richard; Brewer, Rebecca; Shah, Punit; Bird, Geoffrey

    2013-05-01

    Despite considerable research into whether face perception is impaired in autistic individuals, clear answers have proved elusive. In the present study, we sought to determine whether co-occurring alexithymia (characterized by difficulties interpreting emotional states) may be responsible for face-perception deficits previously attributed to autism. Two experiments were conducted using psychophysical procedures to determine the relative contributions of alexithymia and autism to identity and expression recognition. Experiment 1 showed that alexithymia correlates strongly with the precision of expression attributions, whereas autism severity was unrelated to expression-recognition ability. Experiment 2 confirmed that alexithymia is not associated with impaired ability to detect expression variation; instead, results suggested that alexithymia is associated with difficulties interpreting intact sensory descriptions. Neither alexithymia nor autism was associated with biased or imprecise identity attributions. These findings accord with the hypothesis that the emotional symptoms of autism are in fact due to co-occurring alexithymia and that existing diagnostic criteria may need to be revised. PMID:23528789

  2. The left amygdala: A shared substrate of alexithymia and empathy.

    PubMed

    Goerlich-Dobre, Katharina Sophia; Lamm, Claus; Pripfl, Juergen; Habel, Ute; Votinov, Mikhail

    2015-11-15

    Alexithymia, a deficit in emotional self-awareness, and deficits in empathy, which encompasses the awareness of other's emotions, are related constructs that are both associated with a range of psychopathological disorders. Neuroimaging studies suggest that there is overlap between the neural bases of alexithymia and empathy, but no systematic comparison has been conducted so far. The aim of this structural magnetic resonance imaging study was to disentangle the overlap and differences between the morphological profiles of the cognitive and affective dimensions of alexithymia and empathy, and to find out to what extent these differ between women and men. High-resolution T1 anatomical images were obtained from 125 healthy right-handers (18-42 years), 70 women and 55 men. By means of voxel-based morphometry, region of interest (ROI) analyses were performed on gray matter volumes of several anatomically defined a-priori regions previously linked to alexithymia and empathy. Partial correlations were conducted within the female and male group using ROI parameter estimates as dependent variables and the cognitive and affective dimensions of alexithymia and empathy, respectively, as predictors, controlling for age. Results were considered significant if they survived Holm-Bonferroni correction for multiple comparisons. The left amygdala was identified as a key substrate of both alexithymia and empathy. This association was characterized by an opposite pattern: The cognitive alexithymia dimension was linked to smaller, the two empathy dimensions to larger left amygdala volume. While sex-specific effects were not observed for empathy, they were evident for the affective alexithymia dimension: Men-but not women-with difficulty fantasizing had smaller gray matter volume in the middle cingulate cortex. Moreover, structural covariance patterns between the left amygdala and other emotion-related brain regions differed markedly between alexithymia and empathy. These differences

  3. Mycoplasma genitalium in Toronto, Ont

    PubMed Central

    Gesink, Dionne; Racey, C. Sarai; Seah, Christine; Zittermann, Sandra; Mitterni, Leo; Juzkiw, Jerry; Jamieson, Heather; Greer, Jane; Singh, Sudesh; Jensen, Jørgen Skov; Allen, Vanessa

    2016-01-01

    Objective To estimate the prevalence of Mycoplasma genitalium in Toronto, Ont; detect mutations associated with macrolide and fluoroquinolone resistance; and describe treatment outcomes. Design Prospective, cross-sectional study. Setting A sexual health clinic in Toronto. Participants A consecutive sample of men and women attending the sexual health clinic between September 1, 2013, and December 20, 2013. Interventions Participants underwent testing for M genitalium, along with standard sexually transmitted infection screening. All samples that had positive results for M genitalium were tested for mutations associated with resistance to macrolides and fluoroquinolones. Mycoplasma genitalium treatment was based on resistance profile and verified with a test of cure. Main outcome measures Positive results for M genitalium and antibiotic resistance. Results A total of 1193 men and women participated in the study. Overall, 4.5% of the 884 men and 3.2% of the 309 women had positive test results for M genitalium. Asymptomatic infection was common (52.0%). Macrolide resistance–mediating mutations were found in 58.0% of the M genitalium infections. No treatment failure was observed for azithromycin-treated cases. Treatment failure was suspected for 16.7% of cases treated with moxifloxacin. Conclusion Mycoplasma genitalium is present in Canada, with a prevalence comparable to chlamydia and gonorrhea, and has high macrolide and fluoroquinolone resistance. PMID:27331225

  4. Relationship of Alexithymia Ratings to Dopamine D2-type Receptors in Anterior Cingulate and Insula of Healthy Control Subjects but Not Methamphetamine-Dependent Individuals

    PubMed Central

    Okita, Kyoji; Ghahremani, Dara G.; Payer, Doris E.; Robertson, Chelsea L.; Mandelkern, Mark A.

    2016-01-01

    Background: Individuals with substance-use disorders exhibit emotional problems, including deficits in emotion recognition and processing, and this class of disorders also has been linked to deficits in dopaminergic markers in the brain. Because associations between these phenomena have not been explored, we compared a group of recently abstinent methamphetamine-dependent individuals (n=23) with a healthy-control group (n=17) on dopamine D2-type receptor availability, measured using positron emission tomography with [18F]fallypride. Methods: The anterior cingulate and anterior insular cortices were selected as the brain regions of interest, because they receive dopaminergic innervation and are thought to be involved in emotion awareness and processing. The Toronto Alexithymia Scale, which includes items that assess difficulty in identifying and describing feelings as well as externally oriented thinking, was administered, and the scores were tested for association with D2-type receptor availability. Results: Relative to controls, methamphetamine-dependent individuals showed higher alexithymia scores, reporting difficulty in identifying feelings. The groups did not differ in D2-type receptor availability in the anterior cingulate or anterior insular cortices, but a significant interaction between group and D2-type receptor availability in both regions, on self-report score, reflected significant positive correlations in the control group (higher receptor availability linked to higher alexithymia) but nonsignificant, negative correlations (lower receptor availability linked to higher alexithymia) in methamphetamine-dependent subjects. Conclusions: The results suggest that neurotransmission through D2-type receptors in the anterior cingulate and anterior insular cortices influences capacity of emotion processing in healthy people but that this association is absent in individuals with methamphetamine dependence. PMID:26657175

  5. Cognitive Alexithymia Is Associated with the Degree of Risk for Psychosis

    PubMed Central

    van der Velde, Jorien; Swart, Marte; van Rijn, Sophie; van der Meer, Lisette; Wunderink, Lex; Wiersma, Durk; Krabbendam, Lydia; Bruggeman, Richard; Aleman, André

    2015-01-01

    Alexithymia is a personality construct denoting emotion processing problems. It has been suggested to encompass two dimensions: a cognitive and affective dimension. The cognitive dimension is characterized by difficulties in identifying, verbalizing and analyzing emotions, while the affective dimension reflects the level of emotional arousal and imagination. Alexithymia has been previously proposed as a risk factor for developing psychosis. More specifically, the two alexithymia dimensions might be differentially related to the vulnerability for psychosis. Therefore, we examined the two dimensions of alexithymia, measured with the BVAQ in 94 siblings of patients with schizophrenia, 52 subjects at ultra-high risk (UHR) for developing psychosis, 38 patients with schizophrenia and 109 healthy controls. The results revealed that siblings and patients had higher levels of cognitive alexithymia compared to controls. In addition, subjects at UHR for psychosis had even higher levels of cognitive alexithymia compared to the siblings. The levels of affective alexithymia in siblings and patients were equal to controls. However, UHR individuals had significantly lower levels of affective alexithymia (i.e. higher levels of emotional arousal and fantasizing) compared to controls. Alexithymia was further related to subclinical levels of negative and depressive symptoms. These findings indicate that alexithymia varies parametrically with the degree of risk for psychosis. More specifically, a type-II alexithymia pattern, with high levels of cognitive alexithymia and normal or low levels of affective alexithymia, might be a vulnerability factor for psychosis. PMID:26030357

  6. Alexithymia and eating disorders: a critical review of the literature

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Alexithymia is characterized by difficulties identifying feelings and differentiating between feelings and bodily sensations, difficulties communicating feelings, and a concrete cognitive style focused on the external environment. Individuals with eating disorders have elevated levels of alexithymia, particularly difficulties identifying and describing their feelings. A number of theoretical models have suggested that individuals with eating disorders may find emotions unacceptable and/or frightening and may use their eating disorder symptoms (i.e., restricting food intake, bingeing, and/or purging) as a way to avoid or cope with their feelings. The current critical review synthesizes the literature on alexithymia and eating disorders and examines alexithymia levels across eating disorders (i.e., anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and eating disorder not otherwise specified), the role of alexithymia in binge eating disorder, and the influence of alexithymia on the development of eating disorders as well as treatment outcome. The clinical implications of the research conducted to date and directions for future research are discussed. PMID:24999402

  7. Are alexithymia and schizoid personality disorder synonymous diagnoses?

    PubMed

    Coolidge, Frederick L; Estey, Alisa J; Segal, Daniel L; Marle, Peter D

    2013-02-01

    Relationships among alexithymia, personality disorders, and higher-order psychopathological and interpersonal dimensions were examined in 199 college students and a close relative of each. Alexithymia, the difficulty to express and identify emotions, was measured by the Observer Alexithymia Scale (OAS; [Haviland, M. G., Warren, W. L., & Riggs, M. L. (2000). An observer scale to measure alexithymia. Psychosomatics, 41, 385-392]), which was completed by each student's relative. Each student completed three self-report measures: the Coolidge Axis II Inventory (CATI; [Coolidge, F. L. (2000). Coolidge Axis II Inventory: Manual. Colorado Springs, CO: Author.), the Five Dimensional Personality Test (5DPT; [van Kampen, D. (2009). Personality and psychopathology: A theory-based revision of Eysenck's PEN model. Clinical Practice and Epidemiology in Mental Health, 5, 9-21]), and the Horney-Coolidge Tridimensional Inventory (HCTI; [Coolidge, F. L. (1998). Horney-Coolidge Tridimensional Inventory: Manual. Colorado Springs, CO: Author]). Results indicated that higher levels of alexithymia are associated with personality disorders and their traits, such as schizoid, avoidant, and paranoid. With regard to the issue of the similarity and difference between alexithymia and schizoid personality disorder, there was sufficient evidence across all of the measures to suggest that they are not synonymous entities. Finally, alexithymic traits were associated with concurrent depressive traits even in a non-clinical sample. PMID:23021894

  8. Neuroimaging studies of alexithymia: physical, affective, and social perspectives

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Alexithymia refers to difficulty in identifying and expressing one’s emotions, and it is related to disturbed emotional regulation. It was originally proposed as a personality trait that plays a central role in psychosomatic diseases. This review of neuroimaging studies on alexithymia suggests that alexithymia is associated with reduced neural responses to emotional stimuli from the external environment, as well as with reduced activity during imagery, in the limbic and paralimbic areas (i.e., amygdala, insula, anterior/posterior cingulate cortex). In contrast, alexithymia is also known to be associated with enhanced neural activity in somatosensory and sensorimotor regions, including the insula. Moreover, neural activity in the medial, prefrontal, and insula cortex was lowered when people with alexithymia were involved in social tasks. Because most neuroimaging studies have been based on sampling by self-reported questionnaires, the contrasted features of neural activities in response to internal and external emotional stimuli need to be elucidated. The social and emotional responses of people with alexithymia are discussed and recommendations for future research are presented. PMID:23537323

  9. Toronto: The Evolution of an Urban Landscape.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Spelt, Jacob

    1984-01-01

    In the course of history, the Toronto, Canada, landscape has acquired many interesting and attractive features. The history of its urban renewal projects, suburban expansion, inner city change, residential preservation and stabilization, and central city development is examined. (RM)

  10. Acid aerosol transport episodes in Toronto, Ontario

    SciTech Connect

    Thurston, G.D.; Waldman, J.M.

    1987-07-01

    Authors used recently developed equipment to continuously monitor levels of H/sub 2/SO/sub 4/, NH/sub 4/HSO/sub 4/ and (NH/sub 4/)/sub 2/SO/sub 4/ concentrations in the ambient air outside Toronto, Ontario. These data were combined with 48-hour isobaric air mass back-trajectories ending in Toronto on each of the four days with highest acid (and sulfate) aerosol levels. The air masses with highest acid levels were found to have first passed over the SO/sub 2/ source region of the U.S. and then across the Great Lakes to Toronto. The role of ammonia as a modulator of aerosol acidity for eastern U.S. cities but not for Toronto (where the Great Lakes serve as ammonia sinks) is also discussed.

  11. The Assessment of Alexithymia in Medical Settings: Implications for Understanding and Treating Health Problems

    PubMed Central

    Lumley, Mark A.; Neely, Lynn C.; Burger, Amanda J.

    2010-01-01

    The construct of alexithymia encompasses the characteristics of difficulty identifying feelings, difficulty describing feelings, externally oriented thinking, and a limited imaginal capacity. These characteristics are thought to reflect deficits in the cognitive processing and regulation of emotions and to contribute to the onset or maintenance of several medical and psychiatric disorders. This article reviews recent methods for assessing alexithymia and examines how assessing alexithymia can inform clinical practice. Alexithymia is associated with heightened physiological arousal, the tendency to notice and report physical symptoms, and unhealthy compulsive behaviors. Alexithymic patients may respond poorly to psychological treatments, although perhaps not to cognitive-behavioral techniques, and it is unclear whether alexithymia can be improved through treatment. Interpretive problems regarding alexithymia include its overlap with other traits, whether it is secondary to illness or trauma, the possibility of subtypes, and low correlations among multiple measures. Nonetheless, we encourage the assessment of alexithymia in applied settings. PMID:18001224

  12. The relationship between two types of impaired emotion processing: repressive coping and alexithymia

    PubMed Central

    Myers, Lynn B.; Derakshan, Nazanin

    2015-01-01

    The constructs of repressive coping and alexithymia are both related to impaired emotion processing, yet individuals with a repressive coping style (repressors) score lower than controls on standard self-report measures of alexithymia. A large body of evidence indicates that repressors avoid negative affect. Therefore, the current study examined the relationship between repressive coping and alexithymia by using independently-rated interviews with the aim of bypassing repressors’ tendency of avoiding negative affect. Results showed that repressors scored high on alexithymia, similar to anxious individuals on the independently-rated interview, but scored low on alexithymia on a questionnaire measure. Our findings confirm a link between alexithymia and repressive coping and stress the need for non-standard measures in exploring the nature of the relationship between repressive coping and alexithymia. PMID:26136706

  13. Three scales of alexithymia: do they measure the same thing?

    PubMed

    Norton, N C

    1989-01-01

    The psychometric properties of three scales of alexithymia were examined in a sample of 187 female undergraduates. The Shalling Sifneos Personality Scale (SSPS) and the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI) Alexithymia scale had little internal consistency. The scored archetypal test with nine elements (SAT9) had very low interrater reliability. As predicted, the tree measures were not significantly related to one another and the SSPS had a more clearly defined factor structure than the MMPI scale. The MMPI and SSPS scales were differentially related to measures of symptomatology but were similarly related to extraversion, absorption, and SAT scores. Of the three scales, the SSPS appeared to have the highest content validity. The results suggest that alexithymia is not a unitary construct and that its reification as such may be premature. PMID:2778620

  14. Impaired emotion recognition is linked to alexithymia in heroin addicts

    PubMed Central

    Craparo, Giuseppe; Gori, Alessio; Dell’Aera, Stefano; Costanzo, Giulia; Fasciano, Silvia; Tomasello, Antonia

    2016-01-01

    Several investigations document altered emotion processing in opiate addiction. Nevertheless, the origin of this phenomenon remains unclear. Here we examined the role of alexithymia in the ability (i.e., number of errors—accuracy and reaction times—RTs) of thirty-one heroin addicts and thirty-one healthy controls to detect several affective expressions. Results show generally lower accuracy and higher RTs in the recognition of facial expressions of emotions for patients, compared to controls. The hierarchical multivariate regression analysis shows that alexithymia might be responsible of the between groups difference with respect to the RTs in emotion detection. Overall, we provide new insights in the clinical interpretation of affective deficits in heroin addicts suggesting a role of alexithymia in their ability to recognize emotions. PMID:27069803

  15. Impaired emotion recognition is linked to alexithymia in heroin addicts.

    PubMed

    Craparo, Giuseppe; Gori, Alessio; Dell'Aera, Stefano; Costanzo, Giulia; Fasciano, Silvia; Tomasello, Antonia; Vicario, Carmelo M

    2016-01-01

    Several investigations document altered emotion processing in opiate addiction. Nevertheless, the origin of this phenomenon remains unclear. Here we examined the role of alexithymia in the ability (i.e., number of errors-accuracy and reaction times-RTs) of thirty-one heroin addicts and thirty-one healthy controls to detect several affective expressions. Results show generally lower accuracy and higher RTs in the recognition of facial expressions of emotions for patients, compared to controls. The hierarchical multivariate regression analysis shows that alexithymia might be responsible of the between groups difference with respect to the RTs in emotion detection. Overall, we provide new insights in the clinical interpretation of affective deficits in heroin addicts suggesting a role of alexithymia in their ability to recognize emotions. PMID:27069803

  16. Alexithymia and posttraumatic stress: subscales and symptom clusters.

    PubMed

    Declercq, Frédéric; Vanheule, Stijn; Deheegher, John

    2010-10-01

    This study examined the relationship between the emotion-regulating factor alexithymia and the occurrence of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after critical incidents in a nonclinical sample of 136 nurses and ambulance personnel working in military facilities. The results showed that alexythima accounts for variance in PTSD symptoms. Breaking PTSD into its 4 symptom clusters, alexithymia was found to predict numbing and hyperarousal symptoms but not avoidance or reexperiencing symptoms. Finally, the rarely investigated, but clinically relevant, distinctive subdimensions of alexithymia were examined in relation to the 4 PTSD clusters. The difficulty identifying feelings subscale contributed most to the numbing and hyperarousal PTSD subscales. Clinical implications and future research directions are discussed. PMID:20564753

  17. Subclinical alexithymia modulates early audio-visual perceptive and attentional event-related potentials

    PubMed Central

    Delle-Vigne, Dyna; Kornreich, Charles; Verbanck, Paul; Campanella, Salvatore

    2014-01-01

    Introduction: Previous studies have highlighted the advantage of using audio–visual oddball tasks (instead of unimodal ones) in order to electrophysiologically index subclinical behavioral differences. Since alexithymia is highly prevalent in the general population, we investigated whether the use of various bimodal tasks could elicit emotional effects in low- vs. high-alexithymic scorers. Methods: Fifty students (33 females and 17 males) were split into groups based on low and high scores on the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20). During event-related potential (ERP) recordings, they were exposed to three kinds of audio–visual oddball tasks: neutral-AVN—(geometrical forms and bips), animal-AVA—(dog and cock with their respective shouts), or emotional-AVE—(faces and voices) stimuli. In each condition, participants were asked to quickly detect deviant events occurring amongst a train of repeated and frequent matching stimuli (e.g., push a button when a sad face–voice pair appeared amongst a train of neutral face–voice pairs). P100, N100, and P300 components were analyzed: P100 refers to visual perceptive and attentional processing, N100 to auditory ones, and the P300 relates to response-related stages, involving memory processes. Results: High-alexithymic scorers presented a particular pattern of results when processing the emotional stimulations, reflected in early ERP components by increased P100 and N100 amplitudes in the emotional oddball tasks [P100: F(2, 48) = 20,319, p < 0.001; N100: F(2, 96) = 8,807, p = 0.001] as compared to the animal or neutral ones. Indeed, regarding the P100, subjects exhibited a higher amplitude in the AVE condition (8.717 μV), which was significantly different from that observed during the AVN condition (4.382 μV, p < 0.001). For the N100, the highest amplitude was found in the AVE condition (−4.035 μV) and the lowest was observed in the AVN condition (−2.687 μV, p = 0.003). However, no effect was found on the

  18. Deliberate self-harm in substance-dependent patients and relationship with alexithymia and personality disorders: a case-control study.

    PubMed

    Verrocchio, M C; Conti, C; Fulcheri, M

    2010-01-01

    The aim of this study Is to evaluate differences in the prevalence of deliberate self-harm (DSH), alexithymia, and clinical personality patterns and syndromes between treatment-seeking substance-dependents and a comparison group, and to investigate the relationship of DSH with alexithymia, and personality disorders. One hundred and fifty-four subjects participated in the study (77 substance-dependent inpatients and 77 comparison group). DSM-IV diagnoses of substance dependence were made by the clinicians of the Addiction Services following assessment that included clinical observation. Participants were evaluated by the Deliberate Self Harm Inventory, Toronto Alexithymia Scale, and Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory. An Identifying Information Form was used to collect demographic information (e.g. age, educational history, marital status, and employment status). Only to the clinical sample information was added on: types of substance used, age at first substance use, age at regular substance use, and previous treatment attempts. Significant group differences were found for all measures (DSH, TAS-20, MCMI-III). Among substance-dependent patients there was a significant difference between groups with and without DSH in terms of previous treatment attempts, Hypomania and Borderline personality disorder. DSH were significantly correlated with difficulty in identifying feelings in all cases in both the comparison group and in the personality disorders group, and with difficulty describing feelings in the personality disorders group. Personality disorder and drug dependency were predictors for DSH. This study suggests that treatment of substance-dependents should involve screening for deliberate self-harm behavior, difficulty identifying and describing feelings, and personality disorders. Probably, when these problems are detected, specific psychological intervention should be integrated to usual treatment for substance-dependent patients. PMID:21122286

  19. University of Toronto: Marketing from Scratch

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mun, Almira

    2008-01-01

    Established in 1827, the University of Toronto is regarded as one of Canada's leading academic and research institutions. It has the highest number of students (both undergraduate and graduate), the most faculty members, and the widest range of courses among Canadian universities. It has often been referred to as the "Harvard of the North" because…

  20. Greening the Toronto District School Board.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Root, Emily

    2002-01-01

    The Toronto District School Board (Ontario) established a department of environmental education to lighten the school board's impact on the environment and to increase ecological literacy among students. School programs have been developed in the areas of eco-literacy, energy conservation, waste management, and school yard greening. One program…

  1. I don't know how I feel, therefore I act: alexithymia, urgency, and alcohol problems.

    PubMed

    Shishido, Hanako; Gaher, Raluca M; Simons, Jeffrey S

    2013-04-01

    This study examined the relationships between alexithymia, impulsivity, and alcohol use and related problems. The sample consisted of 429 undergraduate students who reported drinking alcohol at least once in the past 3 months. Negative urgency mediated the relationship between alexithymia and alcohol-related problems, whereas positive urgency mediated the relationship between alexithymia and alcohol consumption. In addition, positive urgency moderated the relationship between alexithymia and alcohol-related problems, increasing the strength of this association. These results indicate distinct relationships between alexithymia and negative urgency and positive urgency in predicting alcohol consumption and related problems. The findings of this research contribute to the body of the literature on alexithymia, self-regulation, and etiology of alcohol misuse and related consequences. Furthermore, the findings of the current study provide support for the importance of emotion identification and expression skills training in substance abuse treatment. PMID:23384454

  2. Emotion recognition deficits in eating disorders are explained by co-occurring alexithymia

    PubMed Central

    Brewer, Rebecca; Cook, Richard; Cardi, Valentina; Treasure, Janet; Bird, Geoffrey

    2015-01-01

    Previous research has yielded inconsistent findings regarding the ability of individuals with eating disorders (EDs) to recognize facial emotion, making the clinical features of this population hard to determine. This study tested the hypothesis that where observed, emotion recognition deficits exhibited by patients with EDs are due to alexithymia, a co-occurring condition also associated with emotion recognition difficulties. Ability to recognize facial emotion was investigated in a sample of individuals with EDs and varying degrees of co-occurring alexithymia, and an alexithymia-matched control group. Alexithymia, but not ED symptomology, was predictive of individuals' emotion recognition ability, inferred from tolerance to high-frequency visual noise. This relationship was specific to emotion recognition, as neither alexithymia nor ED symptomology was associated with ability to recognize facial identity. These findings suggest that emotion recognition difficulties exhibited by patients with ED are attributable to alexithymia, and may not be a feature of EDs per se. PMID:26064585

  3. The Relationships between Early Trauma, Dissociation, and Alexithymia in Alcohol Addiction

    PubMed Central

    Ardino, Vittoria; Gori, Alessio; Caretti, Vincenzo

    2014-01-01

    Objective Addiction is often considered a dissociative behavior that is related to alexithymia and developmental trauma. The study aims were to explore the relationships between early trauma, alexithymia, and dissociation. Methods A total of 117 (males=60; females=57) alcohol-addicted individuals and 117 healthy individuals (males=60; females=57) were administered a series of self-report questionnaires that assess traumatic experiences, alexithymia, and pathological dissociation. Results Correlation analyses indicated significant correlations between alexithymia, dissociation, and trauma and a significant difference between the target and control groups, with higher alexithymia and dissociation scores in the target group. Conclusion These findings suggest that trauma, alexithymia, and dissociation are predictors of alcohol addiction. PMID:25110508

  4. Loss-Chasing, Alexithymia, and Impulsivity in a Gambling Task: Alexithymia as a Precursor to Loss-Chasing Behavior When Gambling

    PubMed Central

    Bibby, Peter A.

    2016-01-01

    Objective: To examine the relationship between loss-chasing, the propensity to continue gambling to recover from losses, alexithymia, a personality trait associated poor emotional processing and impulsivity, the tendency to act quickly without reflection or consideration of the consequences. Method: Two experiments are reported (E1: N = 60, Males, 11; Age, 21.6 years. E2: N = 49, Males, 22; Age, 21.1 years). In experiment 1, two groups (low alexithymia, high alexithymia) completed the Cambridge Gambling Task (CGT). Loss-chasing behavior was investigated. In experiment 2, both alexithymia (low, high) and impulsivity (low, high) were examined also using the CGT. A further change was the order of bet proportion from ascending to descending. Results: Experiment 1 shows loss-chasing behavior in participants high in alexithymia but not those low in alexithymia (ηp2=0.09). Experiment 2 shows loss-chasing behavior in participants both low and high in alexithymia but it was greater for participants high in alexithymia (ηp2 = 0.09). The effect of impulsivity was not statistically significant (ηp2 = 0.01). Loss-chasing behavior was correlated with the emotional facets of alexithymia but not the cognitive facet. Conclusions: Alexithymia is a precursor to loss-chasing when gambling and loss-chasing reflects the cognitive and emotional aspects of gambling. Specifically, the tendency to loss-chase depends on the need to recoup previous losses and failure to process the emotional consequences of those losses. PMID:26834676

  5. Visceral larva migrans (toxocariasis) in Toronto.

    PubMed Central

    Fanning, M; Hill, A; Langer, H M; Keystone, J S

    1981-01-01

    A 7-year-old child was admitted to Toronto's Hospital for Sick Children in 1976 with symptoms and laboratory findings compatible with visceral larva migrans, a disease usually caused by Toxocara canis. This prompted a search for other cases seen at the hospital during the period 1952 through 1978. Only 18 cases were discovered that met at least three of six criteria and thus were considered possible or probably cases of the disease. Three possible cases of ocular toxocariasis during the same period were also uncovered. Fever was the commonest presenting symptom. Eosinophilia, leukocytosis and hyperglobulinemia were the most frequent laboratory findings. In view of the small number of cases found in 27 years at this large pediatric hospital with a broad referral base, it is concluded that visceral larva migrans poses little risk to the health of children in the Toronto area. PMID:7459767

  6. Acid aerosol transport episodes in Toronto, Ontario

    SciTech Connect

    Thurston, G.D. . Inst. of Environmental Medicine); Waldman, J. )

    1987-01-01

    In this paper, the authors examine the pollution data collected during a 1986 field study in order to assess the nature and sources of acidic aerosols in the Toronto metropolitan area during this period. Through the examination of the continuous and filter aerosol data, isobaric back-trajectories of air masses, weather maps, and available trace element data, assessment are made of the character and possible sources of acid aerosols in this Southern Ontario city.

  7. Alexithymia in Adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Its Relationship to Internalising Difficulties, Sensory Modulation and Social Cognition

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Milosavljevic, Bosiljka; Carter Leno, Virginia; Simonoff, Emily; Baird, Gillian; Pickles, Andrew; Jones, Catherine R.; Erskine, Catherine; Charman, Tony; Happé, Francesca

    2016-01-01

    Alexithymia is a personality trait frequently found in adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and has been linked to impairments in emotion recognition and empathy. The presentation of alexithymia within ASD at younger ages remains unexplored, and was examined in the present study. Alexithymia rates were significantly elevated in ASD (55%;…

  8. Toronto Residents' Exposure to Ultrafine Particles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sabaliauskas, Kelly Maria

    In urban areas, ultrafine particles (UFP: defined as particulate matter with diameters less than 100nm) are emitted in significant quantities from vehicles and form through a complex series of secondary reactions in the atmosphere. Large uncertainties surrounding the long-term behaviour and spatial distribution of UFP in urban areas have been a significant obstacle for exposure assessment. This research examined one of the longest existing urban UFP data sets, collected at a roadside location in downtown Toronto. Between 2006 and 2011, the concentration of particles with diameters <50nm and 50-100nm decreased by 21% and 17%, respectively. This reduction in concentration was attributed to changes in the vehicle fleet and reduced usage of coal-fired power plants for electricity generation. In addition, this research found that the shape of the particle size distribution exhibited distinct temporal and spatial behaviour suggesting that a single monitoring station does not provide sufficient information about UFP for an entire urban area. This investigation also produced a land-use regression model that was used to estimate the range of concentrations that exist across Toronto during the summer months. The highest concentrations were consistently observed near the downtown core and around highways and industrial areas. Finally, this work provides a foundation for future field studies in Toronto.

  9. Abnormalities in Automatic Processing of Illness-Related Stimuli in Self-Rated Alexithymia

    PubMed Central

    Brandt, Laura; Pintzinger, Nina M.; Tran, Ulrich S.

    2015-01-01

    Aim To investigate abnormalities in automatic information processing related to self- and observer-rated alexithymia, especially with regard to somatization, controlling for confounding variables such as depression and affect. Sample 89 healthy subjects (60% female), aged 19–71 years (M = 32.1). 58 subjects were additionally rated by an observer. Measures Alexithymia (self-rating: TAS-20, observer rating: OAS); automatic information processing (priming task including verbal [illness-related, negative, positive, neutral] and facial [negative, positive, neutral] stimuli); somatoform symptoms (SOMS-7T); confounders: depression (BDI), affect (PANAS). Results Higher self-reported alexithymia scores were associated with lower reaction times for negative (r = .19, p < .10) and positive (r = .26, p < .05) verbal primes when the target was illness-related. Self-reported alexithymia was correlated with number (r = .42, p < .01) and intensity of current somatoform symptoms (r = .36, p < .01), but unrelated to observer-rated alexithymia (r = .11, p = .42). Discussion Results indicate a faster allocation of attentional resources away from task-irrelevant information towards illness-related stimuli in alexithymia. Considering the close relationship between alexithymia and somatization, these findings are compatible with the theoretical view that alexithymics focus strongly on bodily sensations of emotional arousal. A single observer rating (OAS) does not seem to be an adequate alexithymia-measure in community samples. PMID:26090893

  10. Mixed emotions: the contribution of alexithymia to the emotional symptoms of autism.

    PubMed

    Bird, G; Cook, R

    2013-01-01

    It is widely accepted that autism is associated with disordered emotion processing and, in particular, with deficits of emotional reciprocity such as impaired emotion recognition and reduced empathy. However, a close examination of the literature reveals wide heterogeneity within the autistic population with respect to emotional competence. Here we argue that, where observed, emotional impairments are due to alexithymia-a condition that frequently co-occurs with autism-rather than a feature of autism per se. Alexithymia is a condition characterized by a reduced ability to identify and describe one's own emotion, but which results in reduced empathy and an impaired ability to recognize the emotions of others. We briefly review studies of emotion processing in alexithymia, and in autism, before describing a recent series of studies directly testing this 'alexithymia hypothesis'. If found to be correct, the alexithymia hypothesis has wide-reaching implications for the study of autism, and how we might best support subgroups of autistic individuals with, and without, accompanying alexithymia. Finally, we note the presence of elevated rates of alexithymia, and inconsistent reports of emotional impairments, in eating disorders, schizophrenia, substance abuse, Parkinson's Disease, multiple sclerosis and anxiety disorders. We speculate that examining the contribution of alexithymia to the emotional symptoms of these disorders may bear fruit in the same way that it is starting to do in autism. PMID:23880881

  11. Delinquency in Male Adolescents: The Role of Alexithymia and Family Structure

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zimmermann, Gregoire

    2006-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the linkages between alexithymia and delinquency in male adolescents (age ranging from 14 to 18 years), and to investigate whether alexithymia was a good discriminatory factor for juvenile delinquency. Thirty-six offender adolescents and 46 non-offender control adolescents participated in the study and…

  12. Alexithymia, Coping Styles and Traumatic Stress Symptoms in a Sample of Veterans Who Experienced Military Sexual Trauma.

    PubMed

    Gaher, Raluca M; O'Brien, Carol; Smiley, Paul; Hahn, Austin M

    2016-02-01

    The current study examined the association between alexithymia and coping styles (planning, positive reinterpretation and growth, social-emotion coping, and denial), and trauma symptoms in a clinical sample of 170 male and female veterans who experienced sexual trauma during military service. Denial was the only coping style positively associated with trauma symptoms, and it mediated the relationship between alexithymia and trauma symptoms. Alexithymia was negatively associated with planning. Likewise, alexithymia was negatively associated with social-emotional coping and with positive reinterpretation and growth. The results speak to the significant role that alexithymia has in predicting individual coping styles. PMID:25393043

  13. Training in Toronto's "New Economy"=La formation dans la "nouvelle" economie de Toronto.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Community Perspectives Series, 2002

    2002-01-01

    This Community Perspectives Series document includes statements about the new economy in Toronto made by four participants in a March 2001 forum. The new economy was defined by the moderator as "an economy that emphasizes knowledge and technical processes put to the production of goods and other outputs so that an individual's knowledge is viewed…

  14. Road salt movement into two Toronto streams

    SciTech Connect

    Scott, W.S.

    1980-06-01

    De-icing salts utilized to clear roadways during the winter in Toronto, Canada, are found to contribute to stream pollution. Two streams were investigated to observe the temporal and spatial movement of such salts. In the early stages of thaw periods, large increases in stream chloride were detected immediately downstream from road crossing points. Concentration was more uniform during the latter stages of thaws. Urban areas were characterized by a more rapid and complete removal of salt. Accumulation of snow and ice in roadside ditches in rural areas inhibits the movement of salt. (10 graphs, 1 map, 12 references, 4 tables)

  15. Graffiti Art: A Contemporary Study of Toronto Artists.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bowen, Tracey E.

    1999-01-01

    Examines six graffiti artists in Toronto (Canada) who had formal art education at either the senior secondary or postsecondary level through tape-recorded interviews. Focuses on who they are, their views of the graffiti community in Toronto, the relationship between their artwork and education, and whom they each perceive as their audience. (CMK)

  16. The New Politics of Outdoor Education in the New Toronto.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Morris, Mike

    2000-01-01

    Since January 1998, when six former Metro Toronto (Ontario) school boards were consolidated into one board, Toronto's outdoor education centers have experienced restructuring, work stoppages, strikes, relocation, and threats of closure. Outdoor education advocates must form a new united group, preferably from the bottom up, to lobby for adequate…

  17. Towards the Multi-Cultural School - Lessons from Toronto.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Loney, Martin

    1982-01-01

    A multicultural program has been developed in Toronto's (Canada) non-Catholic public school system to accord a place to students' home cultures and to directly confront racism. Includes comments on Toronto Board of Education's policy on race and ethnic relations. (Author/JN)

  18. Understanding the role of personality and alexithymia in food preferences and PROP taste perception.

    PubMed

    Robino, Antonietta; Mezzavilla, Massimo; Pirastu, Nicola; La Bianca, Martina; Gasparini, Paolo; Carlino, Davide; Tepper, Beverly J

    2016-04-01

    Taste perception and food preferences are influenced by a variety of factors, including personality characteristics. The aims of this study were to examine the role of personality characteristics, such as alexithymia (a personality construct characterized by inability to identify, describe, and work with one's own feelings), in: 1) taste responses to the bitter genetic taste-marker PROP and 2) food liking. We studied 649 healthy subjects residing in six genetically-isolated villages of Northeast Italy. Data on PROP taste responsiveness, food liking, personality characteristics and TAS2R28 genotypes were collected. Results showed that PROP non-tasters had higher alexithymia scores than PROP tasters. Moreover, the presence of alexithymia in heterozygous individuals for the rs1726886 polymorphism of the TAS2R38 gene was associated with a reduction in the perceived intensity of PROP. Finally, higher alexithymia scores were associated with liking of alcohol, sweets and fats/meats whereas lower alexithymia scores were related to liking of vegetables, condiments and strong cheeses, Measures of temperament, character, anxiety and depression were also related to food liking. Our findings suggest that: 1) alexithymia, in addition to the TAS2R38 polymorphism, may play a role in responsiveness to the aversive and bitter taste of PROP; and 2) alexithymia, in combination with other personality traits, may provide important insights for better understanding food liking. PMID:26805725

  19. Alexithymia as a prognostic risk factor for health problems: a brief review of epidemiological studies

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    The number of articles on alexithymia has been steadily increasing since the word “alexithymia” was coined in the 1970s to denote a common characteristic that is observed among classic psychosomatic patients in whom therapy was unsuccessful. Alexithymia, a disorder of affect regulation, has been suggested to be broadly associated with various mental and physical health problems. However, most available evidence is based on anecdotal reports or cross-sectional observations. To clarify the predictive value of alexithymia for health problems, a systematic review of prospective studies was conducted. A search of the PubMed database identified 1,507 articles on “alexithymia” that were published by July 31, 2011. Among them, only 7 studies examined the developmental risks of alexithymia for health problems among nonclinical populations and 38 studies examined the prognostic value of alexithymia among clinical populations. Approximately half of the studies reported statistically significant adverse effects, while 5 studies demonstrated favorable effects of alexithymia on health outcomes; four of them were associated with surgical interventions and two involved cancer patients. The studies that showed insignificant results tended to have a small sample size. In conclusion, epidemiological evidence regarding alexithymia as a prognostic risk factor for health problems remains un-established. Even though alexithymia is considered to be an unfavorable characteristic for disease control and health promotion overall, some beneficial aspects are suggested. More prospective studies with sufficient sample sizes and follow-up period, especially those involving life course analyses, are needed to confirm the contribution of alexithymia to health problems. PMID:23244192

  20. Reduced anticipation of negative emotional events in alexithymia.

    PubMed

    Starita, Francesca; Làdavas, Elisabetta; di Pellegrino, Giuseppe

    2016-01-01

    Alexithymia is characterized by difficulties in different domains of emotion processing, especially in relation to negative emotions. Nevertheless, its causal mechanisms remain elusive. Reduced anticipation of negative emotional events might be one such mechanism because it enables the individual to prepare to respond effectively to coming events. To test this, changes in skin conductance response (SCR) were recorded during classical fear conditioning in sixty participants with high (HA), medium (MA) and low (LA) levels of alexithymia. Two coloured squares were presented, one was reinforced with a mild electrical stimulation (CS+) while the other was never reinforced (CS-). Critically, despite all groups showing higher SCR to CS+ compared to CS-, SCR to CS+ was lower and extinguished earlier in HA compared to MA and LA. These differences appeared to be attributable neither to differences in the intensity of stimulation received, nor to SCR to the stimulation itself. Groups showed comparable SCR to CS- as well. Therefore, HA exhibited decreased anticipation of the occurrence of a negative emotional event. Disruption of this mechanism may then compromise effective emotion recognition, emotional response and response regulation, which characterise HA, and represent a unifying causal mechanism underlying the difficulties in emotion processing of this group. PMID:27278856

  1. Reduced anticipation of negative emotional events in alexithymia

    PubMed Central

    Starita, Francesca; Làdavas, Elisabetta; di Pellegrino, Giuseppe

    2016-01-01

    Alexithymia is characterized by difficulties in different domains of emotion processing, especially in relation to negative emotions. Nevertheless, its causal mechanisms remain elusive. Reduced anticipation of negative emotional events might be one such mechanism because it enables the individual to prepare to respond effectively to coming events. To test this, changes in skin conductance response (SCR) were recorded during classical fear conditioning in sixty participants with high (HA), medium (MA) and low (LA) levels of alexithymia. Two coloured squares were presented, one was reinforced with a mild electrical stimulation (CS+) while the other was never reinforced (CS−). Critically, despite all groups showing higher SCR to CS+ compared to CS−, SCR to CS+ was lower and extinguished earlier in HA compared to MA and LA. These differences appeared to be attributable neither to differences in the intensity of stimulation received, nor to SCR to the stimulation itself. Groups showed comparable SCR to CS− as well. Therefore, HA exhibited decreased anticipation of the occurrence of a negative emotional event. Disruption of this mechanism may then compromise effective emotion recognition, emotional response and response regulation, which characterise HA, and represent a unifying causal mechanism underlying the difficulties in emotion processing of this group. PMID:27278856

  2. Borderline Personality Disorder Symptoms in College Students: The Complex Interplay between Alexithymia, Emotional Dysregulation and Rumination

    PubMed Central

    Reupert, Andrea

    2016-01-01

    Both Emotional Cascade Theory and Linehan’s Biosocial Theory suggest dysregulated behaviors associated with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) emerge, in part, because of cycles of rumination, poor emotional recognition and poor emotion regulation. In this study we examined relationships between rumination, alexithymia, and emotion regulation in predicting dysregulated behaviors associated with BPD (e.g. self-harm, substance use, aggression), and explored both indirect and moderating effects among these variables. The sample comprised 2261 college students who completed self-report measures of the aforementioned constructs. BPD symptoms, stress, family psychological illness, and alexithymia exerted direct effects on behaviors. Symptoms had an indirect effect on behaviors through rumination, alexithymia and emotional dysregulation. In addition, the relationship between symptoms and dysregulated behaviors was conditional on level of rumination and alexithymia. Implications for early identification and treatment of BPD and related behaviors in college settings are discussed. PMID:27348858

  3. Borderline Personality Disorder Symptoms in College Students: The Complex Interplay between Alexithymia, Emotional Dysregulation and Rumination.

    PubMed

    Meaney, Rebecca; Hasking, Penelope; Reupert, Andrea

    2016-01-01

    Both Emotional Cascade Theory and Linehan's Biosocial Theory suggest dysregulated behaviors associated with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) emerge, in part, because of cycles of rumination, poor emotional recognition and poor emotion regulation. In this study we examined relationships between rumination, alexithymia, and emotion regulation in predicting dysregulated behaviors associated with BPD (e.g. self-harm, substance use, aggression), and explored both indirect and moderating effects among these variables. The sample comprised 2261 college students who completed self-report measures of the aforementioned constructs. BPD symptoms, stress, family psychological illness, and alexithymia exerted direct effects on behaviors. Symptoms had an indirect effect on behaviors through rumination, alexithymia and emotional dysregulation. In addition, the relationship between symptoms and dysregulated behaviors was conditional on level of rumination and alexithymia. Implications for early identification and treatment of BPD and related behaviors in college settings are discussed. PMID:27348858

  4. [Diagnosis of alexithymia in the workplace: definition and validation of an instrument].

    PubMed

    Catalano, S; Blandi, P; Miragliotta, A

    2007-01-01

    The aim of this study is to provide, to develop and validate, a new instrument for measuring alexithymia in the workplace. To develop and validate the MAQ in the Italian population, verifying its psychometric properties, we involved 585 participants, ranged from 16 to 33 of age, divided by gender and level of schooling. All participants completed MAQ which contained 108 items, and then Principal Components Analysis with Oblimin rotation was elaborated to understand latent structure of alexithymia. The study showed Alexithymia is composed by five dimensions: (1) difficulty to communicate, (2) to identify emotions, (3) and to manage time such as a coping style, (4) diffident attachment, (5) and pragmatic way to think. The psychometric properties of MAQ and internal consistency were demonstrated to be robust. Reliability analysis by Alpha was significant. Hence, MAQ could be useful in evaluating of the main traits involved in Alexithymia. PMID:18575360

  5. The impact of autism spectrum disorder and alexithymia on judgments of moral acceptability.

    PubMed

    Brewer, Rebecca; Marsh, Abigail A; Catmur, Caroline; Cardinale, Elise M; Stoycos, Sarah; Cook, Richard; Bird, Geoffrey

    2015-08-01

    One's own emotional response toward a hypothetical action can influence judgments of its moral acceptability. Some individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) exhibit atypical emotional processing, and moral judgments. Research suggests, however, that emotional deficits in ASD are due to co-occurring alexithymia, meaning atypical moral judgments in ASD may be due to alexithymia also. Individuals with and without ASD (matched for alexithymia) judged the moral acceptability of emotion-evoking statements and identified the emotion evoked. Moral acceptability judgments were predicted by alexithymia. Crucially, however, this relationship held only for individuals without ASD. While ASD diagnostic status did not directly predict either judgment, those with ASD did not base their moral acceptability judgments on emotional information. Findings are consistent with evidence demonstrating that decision-making is less subject to emotional biases in those with ASD. PMID:26375827

  6. Metabolic mapping reveals sex-dependent involvement of default mode and salience network in alexithymia.

    PubMed

    Colic, L; Demenescu, L R; Li, M; Kaufmann, J; Krause, A L; Metzger, C; Walter, M

    2016-02-01

    Alexithymia, a personality construct marked by difficulties in processing one's emotions, has been linked to the altered activity in the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC). Although longitudinal studies reported sex differences in alexithymia, what mediates them is not known. To investigate sex-specific associations of alexithymia and neuronal markers, we mapped metabolites in four brain regions involved differentially in emotion processing using a point-resolved spectroscopy MRS sequence in 3 Tesla. Both sexes showed negative correlations between alexithymia and N-acetylaspartate (NAA) in pregenual ACC (pgACC). Women showed a robust negative correlation of the joint measure of glutamate and glutamine (Glx) to NAA in posterior cingulate cortex (PCC), whereas men showed a weak positive association of Glx to NAA in dorsal ACC (dACC). Our results suggest that lowered neuronal integrity in pgACC, a region of the default mode network (DMN), might primarily account for the general difficulties in emotional processing in alexithymia. Association of alexithymia in women extends to another region in the DMN-PCC, while in men a region in the salience network (SN) was involved. These observations could be representative of sex specific regulation strategies that include diminished internal evaluation of feelings in women and cognitive emotion suppression in men. PMID:26341904

  7. The Sound of Feelings: Electrophysiological Responses to Emotional Speech in Alexithymia

    PubMed Central

    Goerlich, Katharina Sophia; Aleman, André; Martens, Sander

    2012-01-01

    Background Alexithymia is a personality trait characterized by difficulties in the cognitive processing of emotions (cognitive dimension) and in the experience of emotions (affective dimension). Previous research focused mainly on visual emotional processing in the cognitive alexithymia dimension. We investigated the impact of both alexithymia dimensions on electrophysiological responses to emotional speech in 60 female subjects. Methodology During unattended processing, subjects watched a movie while an emotional prosody oddball paradigm was presented in the background. During attended processing, subjects detected deviants in emotional prosody. The cognitive alexithymia dimension was associated with a left-hemisphere bias during early stages of unattended emotional speech processing, and with generally reduced amplitudes of the late P3 component during attended processing. In contrast, the affective dimension did not modulate unattended emotional prosody perception, but was associated with reduced P3 amplitudes during attended processing particularly to emotional prosody spoken in high intensity. Conclusions Our results provide evidence for a dissociable impact of the two alexithymia dimensions on electrophysiological responses during the attended and unattended processing of emotional prosody. The observed electrophysiological modulations are indicative of a reduced sensitivity to the emotional qualities of speech, which may be a contributing factor to problems in interpersonal communication associated with alexithymia. PMID:22615853

  8. SITE DEMONSTRATION OF THE TORONTO HARBOUR COMMISSIONERS SOIL RECYCLING PROJECT

    EPA Science Inventory

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in cooperation with the Toronto Harbour Commissioners (THC), conducted a Superfund InnovativeTechnology Evaluation (SITE) demonstration of the THC Soil Recycle Treatment Train. The treatment train consists of three technologies op...

  9. The role of Toronto urban emissions in regional ozone episodes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Xiude; Roussel, Pascal B.; Meld, Octavio T.; Selorio, Percy M.

    To study the impact of the Greater Toronto urban emissions on O 3 levels in southern Ontario, the ambient ozone measurements made in Ontario during the time period of 1979-1988 were analysed. Statistics indicate an O 3 depression associated with the Greater Toronto urban plume under the conditions of regional O 3 episodes. An analysis of the 03 data at Dorset and Stouffville, two rural monitoring sites on the NE to NNE side of Toronto, with screening based on wind measurements, shows a possible negative impact of the Greater Toronto urban plume on the O 3 levels at 40 km downwind under regional episodic conditions. On average, the impact led to an O 3 depression of ˜ 22-27 ppbv within the Greater Toronto urban plume in comparison with the background air. A photochemical transport model was used further to investigate the impact of the Greater Toronto's anthropogenic emissions on O 3 levels downwind. The model includes a photochemical module, a vertical transport module and a horizontal mixing algorithm. Two sets of initial conditions were derived by running the model in the Eulerian mode, and by adjusting emissions to fit the ambient measurements of O 3, NO x and NMHCs under regional episodic conditions. The adjusted anthropogenic emission rates for the Greater Toronto urban area were 72.4 and 83.3 % of their original 1985 inventory values for NO x and NMHCs, respectively. The adjustment may reflect the uncertainties in the emissions inventory. Diurnal variations of the species at virtual receptors located at different downwind distances from Toronto were calculated by running the model following 25 plume puffs consecutively released at 60-minute intervals. The calculated O 3 depression at 40 km downwind is in good agreement with the historical ambient data. Calculated spatial distributions of the daily maximum O 3 levels indicate that, under the regional episodic conditions, there is an 03 depression of about 20 ppbv extending from the Greater Toronto urban core

  10. Atypical trait inferences from facial cues in alexithymia.

    PubMed

    Brewer, Rebecca; Collins, Fredrika; Cook, Richard; Bird, Geoffrey

    2015-10-01

    It is often difficult to distinguish strangers' permanent facial shapes from their transient facial expressions, for example, whether they are scowling or have narrow-set eyes. Overinterpretation of ambiguous cues may contribute to the rapid character judgments we make about others. Someone with narrow eyes might be judged untrustworthy, because of strong associations between facial anger and threat. To test this hypothesis, we investigated the trait judgments made by individuals with severe alexithymia, associated with impaired recognition of facial emotion. Consistent with the hypothesis, alexithymic participants demonstrated reduced interrater consistency when judging the character traits of unfamiliar faces, and the presence of subtle emotions. Nevertheless, where alexithymics perceived, or misperceived, emotion cues, the character traits inferred thereafter were broadly typical. The finding that individuals with developmental deficits of emotion recognition exhibit atypical attribution of character traits, confirms the hypothesis that emotion-recognition mechanisms play a causal role in character judgments. PMID:25867918

  11. Hearing Feelings: Affective Categorization of Music and Speech in Alexithymia, an ERP Study

    PubMed Central

    Goerlich, Katharina Sophia; Witteman, Jurriaan; Aleman, André; Martens, Sander

    2011-01-01

    Background Alexithymia, a condition characterized by deficits in interpreting and regulating feelings, is a risk factor for a variety of psychiatric conditions. Little is known about how alexithymia influences the processing of emotions in music and speech. Appreciation of such emotional qualities in auditory material is fundamental to human experience and has profound consequences for functioning in daily life. We investigated the neural signature of such emotional processing in alexithymia by means of event-related potentials. Methodology Affective music and speech prosody were presented as targets following affectively congruent or incongruent visual word primes in two conditions. In two further conditions, affective music and speech prosody served as primes and visually presented words with affective connotations were presented as targets. Thirty-two participants (16 male) judged the affective valence of the targets. We tested the influence of alexithymia on cross-modal affective priming and on N400 amplitudes, indicative of individual sensitivity to an affective mismatch between words, prosody, and music. Our results indicate that the affective priming effect for prosody targets tended to be reduced with increasing scores on alexithymia, while no behavioral differences were observed for music and word targets. At the electrophysiological level, alexithymia was associated with significantly smaller N400 amplitudes in response to affectively incongruent music and speech targets, but not to incongruent word targets. Conclusions Our results suggest a reduced sensitivity for the emotional qualities of speech and music in alexithymia during affective categorization. This deficit becomes evident primarily in situations in which a verbalization of emotional information is required. PMID:21573026

  12. Predictors for DSM-5 nonsuicidal self-injury in female adolescent inpatients: The role of childhood maltreatment, alexithymia, and dissociation.

    PubMed

    Lüdtke, Janine; In-Albon, Tina; Michel, Chantal; Schmid, Marc

    2016-05-30

    The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between various adverse childhood experiences, alexithymia, and dissociation in predicting nonsuicidal self-injury (NSSI) in an inpatient sample of female adolescents. Seventy-two adolescents (aged 14-18 years) with NSSI disorder (n=46) or mental disorders without NSSI (n=26) completed diagnostic interviews and self-report measures to assess NSSI disorder according to the DSM-5 criteria, childhood maltreatment, alexithymia, and dissociation. Alexithymia and dissociation were highly prevalent in both study groups. Multivariate logistic regression analyses indicated that only alexithymia was a significant predictor for NSSI, whereas childhood maltreatment and dissociation had no predictive influence. The association between alexithymia and NSSI emphasizes the significance of emotion regulation training for female adolescents with NSSI. Efforts to reduce NSSI behavior should therefore foster skills to heighten the perception and recognition of one's own emotions. PMID:27088878

  13. Alexithymia in Adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Its Relationship to Internalising Difficulties, Sensory Modulation and Social Cognition.

    PubMed

    Milosavljevic, Bosiljka; Carter Leno, Virginia; Simonoff, Emily; Baird, Gillian; Pickles, Andrew; Jones, Catherine R G; Erskine, Catherine; Charman, Tony; Happé, Francesca

    2016-04-01

    Alexithymia is a personality trait frequently found in adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and has been linked to impairments in emotion recognition and empathy. The presentation of alexithymia within ASD at younger ages remains unexplored, and was examined in the present study. Alexithymia rates were significantly elevated in ASD (55%; 31/56 scoring above cut-off) versus non-ASD adolescents (16%; 5/32 scoring above cut-off). Within individuals with ASD, alexithymia was associated with increased self-reported anxiety, parent-reported emotional difficulties, self-reported sensory processing atypicalities, and poorer emotion recognition, but was not associated with theory of mind ability. Overall, our results suggest that alexithymia is highly prevalent, and has selective cognitive correlates in young people with ASD. PMID:26659552

  14. Cognitive Alexithymia Mediates the Association Between Avoidant Attachment and Interpersonal Problems in Patients With Somatoform Disorder.

    PubMed

    Koelen, Jurrijn A; Eurelings-Bontekoe, Liesbeth H M; Kempke, Stefan

    2016-08-17

    Patients with somatoform disorder (SFD) are characterized by the presence of chronic physical complaints that are not fully explained by a general medical condition or another mental disorder. Insecure attachment patterns are common in this patient group, which are often associated with interpersonal difficulties. In the present study, the mediational role of two types of alexithymia and negative affectivity (NA) was examined in the association between attachment styles and interpersonal problems in a group of 120 patients with SFD. Patients were requested to fill out several self-report questionnaires for the assessment of attachment strategies, alexithymia, NA, and interpersonal problems. Cognitive alexithymia (i.e., the inability to identify and verbalize emotions) mediated the relationship between avoidant attachment patterns and interpersonal problems, even after controlling for NA. Preliminary findings also suggested that NA acted as a moderator of the mediator cognitive alexithymia. These results have important implications for clinical practice, as this study clearly shows that interpersonal problems do not automatically follow from insecure attachment strategies, but are contingent upon alexithymic features. It is recommended to target alexithymic features in patients with SFD, particularly in the context of negative emotions. Therefore, cognitive alexithymia may be an important therapeutic focus, specifically in the treatment of avoidant ptients with SFD. PMID:27185015

  15. Childhood Maltreatment and Sexual Risk Taking: The Mediating Role of Alexithymia.

    PubMed

    Hahn, Austin M; Simons, Raluca M; Simons, Jeffrey S

    2016-01-01

    Childhood maltreatment is a significant predictor of sexual risk taking. The nature of this relationship is not fully understood; however, emotion dysregulation may play an important role. We tested the role of difficulty identifying and describing feelings (i.e., alexithymia) on the relationship between childhood maltreatment and sexual risk taking. Specifically, we hypothesized two mechanisms, one in which alexithymia is related to sexual risk taking via negative urgency and alcohol use and a second one in which alexithymia is related to sexual risk taking via neediness. The participants for this study were 425 sexually active college undergraduates (303 females, 122 males) between the ages of 18 and 25 years. The results of a structural equation model indicated that alexithymia accounted for a significant part of the relationship between child maltreatment and sexual risk behavior. Moreover, the relationship between alexithymia and sexual risk taking was fully accounted for by two separate paths. First, negative urgency and subsequent alcohol use partially mediated the relationship, and the second effect was accounted for by needy interpersonal style. Adverse experiences during childhood can impair emotional functioning and contribute to behavioral and interpersonal dysregulation. PMID:26318149

  16. Accounting for the associations between child maltreatment and internalizing problems: The role of alexithymia.

    PubMed

    Brown, Shaquanna; Fite, Paula J; Stone, Katie; Bortolato, Marco

    2016-02-01

    Internalizing difficulties are one of the most widely documented consequences of child maltreatment. However, there is a need for studies delineating the factors that account for this association. Despite research showing that alexithymia is associated with both child maltreatment and internalizing problems, the role of alexithymia in the link between child maltreatment and internalizing problems has not received much attention in the literature. The current study evaluated whether a history of child maltreatment was associated with symptoms of depression, anxiety, and loneliness in emerging adulthood, and whether alexithymia partially accounted for these associations. Participants included 339 emerging adults ranging between 18 and 25 years of age (M=19.00, SD=1.26, 51.3% male). Exposure to child maltreatment (i.e., physical abuse, physical neglect, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, and emotional neglect) was positively associated with depression, anxiety, and loneliness symptoms. Tests of indirect effects suggested that associations between emotional neglect and symptoms of depression, anxiety, and loneliness were partially explained by alexithymia. However, alexithymia did not account for any other associations between the remaining four maltreatment types and internalizing problems. Findings highlight the need for further evaluation of the factors that might account for associations between child maltreatment and internalizing difficulties. Future directions and implications for interventions are reviewed. PMID:26774529

  17. Cost of severe haemophilia in Toronto.

    PubMed

    Heemstra, H E; Zwaan, T; Hemels, M; Feldman, B M; Blanchette, V; Kern, M; Einarson, T R

    2005-05-01

    Our objective was to determine costs and trends in treating boys with severe haemophilia A before our centre routinely used prophylaxis. One reviewer extracted data from patient charts to determine resource consumption for 17 boys with severe haemophilia A from 1978 to 1998 at Toronto's Hospital for Sick Children. Resources included factor concentrate, doctors and health care professionals (physiotherapists/social workers), tests (laboratory, radiological and diagnostic) and hospitalizations. Subgroup analysis on those patients infected with HIV and/or hepatitis were also performed. Costs in Canadian Dollars were taken from standard lists and discounted at 3%. Total average cost (range) 62 292 dollars (3339-121 738) per year patient(-1); the largest fraction, 59 910 dollars (3103-119 480), 96.2% was accounted for by factor VIII. Hospitalizations accounted for 1832 dollars (0-5217) per patient year(-1) including drugs, nursing care and stay. Doctor and health care professionals visits averaged 252 dollars (36-462) and 72 dollars (0-175) per patient year(-1), laboratory and other tests cost 201 dollars (22-377) and 26 dollars (2-60) per patient year(-1), respectively. The average number of bleeds was 12.9 (2.0-22.0) per patient year(-1), decreasing since 1977 by 0.68 per patient year(-1) (R(2) = 0.56). Hospitalizations averaged 0.22 (0-4) per patient year(-1), lasting 2.3 days. From 1984, hospitalizations decreased by 0.025 patient(-1) year(-1) (R(2) = 0.76). Concurrently, the average treatment costs increased by 5456 dollars patient(-1) year(-1) (R(2) = 0.81). Clotting factor concentrate cost per patient increased by 5521 dollars year(-1) (R(2) = 0.82). Patients with virally transmitted diseases had considerable higher costs. The cost per year was substantial. Costs increased with virally transmitted diseases. Number of bleeds and hospitalizations over the period of study decreased and costs increased because of factor use in secondary prophylaxis. PMID:15876271

  18. TECHNOLOGY EVALUATION REPORT: TORONTO HARBOUR COMMISSIONERS (THC) SOIL RECYCLE TREATMENT TRAIN. Project Summary

    EPA Science Inventory

    A demonstration of the Toronto Harbour Commissioners' (THC) Soil Recycle Treatment Train was performed under the Superfund Innovative Technology Evaluation (SITE) Program at a pilot plant facility in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The Soil Recycle Treatment Train, which consists of s...

  19. The Contribution of Alexithymia to Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder Symptoms Dimensions: An Investigation in a Large Community Sample in Italy

    PubMed Central

    Pozza, Andrea; Giaquinta, Nicoletta; Dèttore, Davide

    2015-01-01

    Poor attention has been dedicated to the relation between Alexithymia and specific OCD symptoms dimensions. Knowledge about which Alexithymia domains are the most affected ones in OCD dimensions could inform clinical practice, suggesting the need for the introduction of psychotherapeutic interventions targeting Alexithymia deficits. The current study aimed to investigate which OCD symptom dimension correlated with Alexithymia domains. A total of 425 community individuals (mean age = 27.80, SD = 9.89, 60% women) completed measures of Alexithymia, OCD symptoms dimensions, anxiety, and depression. Moderate correlations emerged between Difficulty Identifying Feelings and Hoarding (r = .36, p < .001) and Checking symptoms (r = .34, p < .001) and between Difficulty Describing Feelings and Pure Obsessing (r = .31, p < .001). Difficulty Identifying Feelings uniquely predicted OCD symptoms (β = 0.20, t = 3.96, and p < .001), after controlling for anxiety and depression. A main effect emerged of Alexithymia on Ordering (β = 0.70, t = 2.50, p < .05) and Pure Obsessing symptoms (β = 0.043, t = 2.08, and p < .05). Psychotherapeutic interventions specifically targeting Alexithymia should be integrated in the treatment of Ordering and Pure Obsessing symptoms. Difficulty Identifying Feelings and Difficulty Describing Feelings should be addressed in the psychotherapeutic treatment of Hoarding, Checking, and Pure Obsessing, respectively. PMID:26425542

  20. The Intervening Role of Alexithymia in the Relationship between Attachment Styles and Test Anxiety among Gifted High School Students

    PubMed Central

    Sepahvand, Esfandiar; Rafieian, Keivan; Roumani, Saeid; Komasi, Saeid; Reshadat, Soheyla

    2015-01-01

    Background Given the importance of test anxiety among gifted students, the present study was conducted to assess the intervening role of alexithymia in the relationship between test anxiety and attachment styles. Methods By means of simple random sampling, 300 participants were selected out of all the students at two high schools in Khorramabad, which are affiliated with the Iranian National Organization for Development of Exceptional Talents (SAMPAD). Test anxiety, alexithymia, and attachment style questionnaires were used for data collection. Pearson correlation and path analysis tests were used to analyze the data. Results The results showed a positive relationship between test anxiety and avoidant and anxious attachment styles. Alexithymia and test anxiety were also positively related. Moreover, the results indicated that 12% of changes in test anxiety were explained by avoidant and anxious attachment styles as well as alexithymia. The relationship between the avoidant attachment style and test anxiety was 0.06 through alexithymia. However, no significant relationship between anxious attachment and test anxiety through alexithymia was found. Conclusion The avoidant attachment style leads to test anxiety when the level of alexithymia increases in an individual. PMID:26217481

  1. Test Pattern; Instructional Television at Scarborough College, University of Toronto.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, John A.

    Scarborough College of the University of Toronto was the first North American college planned from its inception for television. Closed-circuit television was fully integrated into its physical fabric and academic program. Videotaped lectures, backed up by small group discussions, were to replace many live lectures. The plan was calculated not…

  2. University of Toronto Instructors' Experiences with Developing MOOCs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Najafi, Hedieh; Rolheiser, Carol; Harrison, Laurie; Håklev, Stian

    2015-01-01

    We interviewed eight University of Toronto (U of T) instructors who have offered MOOCs on Coursera or EdX between 2012 and 2014 to understand their motivation for MOOC instruction, their experience developing and teaching MOOCs, and their perceptions of the implications of MOOC instruction on their teaching and research practices. Through…

  3. Highlights of the University of Toronto Urology Update 2014

    PubMed Central

    Herschorn, Sender

    2015-01-01

    At the University of Toronto Urology Update 2014, a faculty of Canadian and American experts presented a series of lectures covering a range of topics in the field of urology. Areas of focus included prostate cancer (PCa), functional urology, erectile dysfunction (ED), and surgical topics (e.g., percutaneous nephrolithotomy [PCNL]). PMID:25784963

  4. Childhood Emotional Abuse and Disordered Eating among Undergraduate Females: Mediating Influence of Alexithymia and Distress

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hund, Anita R.; Espelage, Dorothy L.

    2006-01-01

    Objective: Drawing from stress-vulnerability and trauma theory (e.g., Rorty & Yager, 1996), this paper presents a model of associations among child emotional abuse (CEA), alexithymia, general distress (GD), and disordered eating (DE). This study extended previous research on psychological outcomes of child physical and sexual abuse to explore…

  5. What I Like Is How I Am: Impact of Alexithymia on Aesthetic Preference

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Giannini, Anna Maria; Tizzani, Emanuela; Baralla, Francesca; Gurrieri, Grazia

    2013-01-01

    Aim of this work was to explore the impact of alexithymia on art works appreciation, to examine the influence of emotion regulation on art judgment. While observing a painting, the viewer's cognitive structure contains several types of information (semantic, episodic, and strategic) and is the repository of personal traits, motivations, and…

  6. Alexithymia as a Mediator between Childhood Trauma and Self-Injurious Behaviors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Paivio, Sandra C.; McCulloch, Chantal R.

    2004-01-01

    Objective: The aim of this study was to test whether alexithymia mediates the relationship between childhood maltreatment and self-injurious behaviors (SIB) in college women. Method: The sample was comprised of 100 female undergraduate students. Measures were the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire [D. Bernstein, L. Fink, Manual for the Childhood…

  7. Alexithymia, emotion perception, and social assertiveness in adult women with Noonan and Turner syndromes.

    PubMed

    Roelofs, Renée L; Wingbermühle, Ellen; Freriks, Kim; Verhaak, Chris M; Kessels, Roy P C; Egger, Jos I M

    2015-04-01

    Noonan syndrome (NS) and Turner syndrome (TS) are associated with cognitive problems and difficulties in affective information processing. While both phenotypes include short stature, facial dysmorphisms, and a webbed neck, genetic etiology and neuropsychological phenotype differ significantly. The present study examines putative differences in affective information processing and social assertiveness between adult women with NS and TS. Twenty-six women with NS, 40 women with TS, and 40 female controls were matched on age and intelligence, and subsequently compared on (1) alexithymia, measured by the Bermond-Vorst Alexithymia Questionnaire, (2) emotion perception, evaluated by the Emotion Recognition Task, and (3) social assertiveness and social discomfort, assessed by the Scale for Interpersonal Behavior. Women with TS showed higher levels of alexithymia than women with NS and controls (P-values < 0.001), whereas women with NS had more trouble recognizing angry facial expressions in comparison with controls (P = 0.01). No significant group differences were found for the frequency of social assertiveness and the level of social discomfort. Women with NS and TS demonstrated different patterns of impairment in affective information processing, in terms of alexithymia and emotion perception. The present findings suggest neuropsychological phenotyping to be helpful for the diagnosis of specific cognitive-affective deficits in genetic syndromes, for the enhancement of genetic counseling, and for the development of personalized treatment plans. PMID:25711203

  8. Childhood Sexual Abuse, Disordered Eating, Alexithymia, and General Distress: A Mediation Model

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hund, Anita R.; Espelage, Dorothy L.

    2005-01-01

    Drawing from trauma-related theory (e.g., M. F. Schwartz & P. Gay, 1996), this article presents a model of associations among child sexual abuse (CSA), psychological distress, alexithymia, and disordered eating (DE). Structural equation modeling was used to test this conceptual model with a sample of female college students (N = 589). Results…

  9. Dissociation between Emotional Remapping of Fear and Disgust in Alexithymia

    PubMed Central

    Scarpazza, Cristina; Làdavas, Elisabetta; di Pellegrino, Giuseppe

    2015-01-01

    There is growing evidence that individuals are able to understand others’ emotions because they “embody” them, i.e., re-experience them by activating a representation of the observed emotion within their own body. One way to study emotion embodiment is provided by a multisensory stimulation paradigm called emotional visual remapping of touch (eVRT), in which the degree of embodiment/remapping of emotions is measured as enhanced detection of near-threshold tactile stimuli on one’s own face while viewing different emotional facial expressions. Here, we measured remapping of fear and disgust in participants with low (LA) and high (HA) levels of alexithymia, a personality trait characterized by a difficulty in recognizing emotions. The results showed that fear is remapped in LA but not in HA participants, while disgust is remapped in HA but not in LA participants. To investigate the hypothesis that HA might exhibit increased responses to emotional stimuli producing a heightened physical and visceral sensations, i.e., disgust, in a second experiment we investigated participants’ interoceptive abilities and the link between interoception and emotional modulations of VRT. The results showed that participants’ disgust modulations of VRT correlated with their ability to perceive bodily signals. We suggest that the emotional profile of HA individuals on the eVRT task could be related to their abnormal tendency to be focalized on their internal bodily signals, and to experience emotions in a “physical” way. Finally, we speculated that these results in HA could be due to a enhancement of insular activity during the perception of disgusted faces. PMID:26462241

  10. Educational Alliance for a Sustainable Toronto: The University of Toronto and the City's United Nations University (UNU) Regional Centre of Expertise

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stefanovic, Ingrid Leman

    2008-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to describe the role that the University of Toronto has had in helping to establish a Regional Centre of Expertise (RCE) on Education for Sustainable Development in Toronto, Canada. The way in which the RCE initiative has helped to move forward the university's own five-year plan will also be discussed.…

  11. The effects of autism and alexithymia on physiological and verbal responsiveness to music.

    PubMed

    Allen, Rory; Davis, Rob; Hill, Elisabeth

    2013-02-01

    It has been suggested that individuals with autism will be less responsive to the emotional content of music than typical individuals. With the aim of testing this hypothesis, a group of high-functioning adults on the autism spectrum was compared with a group of matched controls on two measures of emotional responsiveness to music, comprising physiological and verbal measures. Impairment in participants ability to verbalize their emotions (type-II alexithymia) was also assessed. The groups did not differ significantly on physiological responsiveness, but the autism group was significantly lower on the verbal measure. However, inclusion of the alexithymia score as a mediator variable nullified this group difference, suggesting that the difference was due not to absence of underlying emotional responsiveness to music in autism, but to a reduced ability to articulate it. PMID:22752845

  12. Alexithymia, a compounding factor for eating and social avoidance symptoms in anorexia nervosa.

    PubMed

    Courty, Annaig; Godart, Nathalie; Lalanne, Christophe; Berthoz, Sylvie

    2015-01-01

    Socio-affective difficulties, in particular difficulties in representing, communicating and feeling emotions, may play a critical role in anorexia nervosa (AN). The aim of this longitudinal study was to explore the links between alexithymia and two types of difficulties in AN: eating symptoms and social avoidance. Sixty adolescent girls with AN were recruited following hospitalisation in a specialised department. They completed self-administered questionnaires of alexithymia (TAS-20), of central symptoms of the eating disorders (EDI), and of anxious and depressive affects (SCL-90). Anxiety and social avoidance were assessed in the course of a standardised interview (LSAS). These measures were performed at inclusion, and at 6-, 12- and 18-months' follow-up. The relationship between TAS-20 and EDI or LSAS total scale scores across the four time points was assessed using mixed-effects models, including anxiety, depression, BMI, anorexia subtype, and age as co-factors. Partial least square regression was used to refine this multivariate analysis at subscale level, at inclusion and 18 months. Robust associations between TAS-20 and EDI scores were found, independently from anxious and depressive scores, nutritional state and AN subtype. These effects appeared more particularly linked to the implication of the dimensions difficulties identifying and describing feelings, interpersonal mistrust, feelings of inadequacy and interoceptive awareness deficit. There was also a durable association between alexithymia and social anxiety and avoidance, after adjusting for the confounding effects of depression, and anxiety, and the state of starvation. Difficulties in describing feelings appeared particularly involved here. Thus alexithymia does appear as a factor in the persistence of disorders in AN, and difficulties identifying and describing feelings could compound the social difficulties and major the relational isolation of these patients. PMID:25443977

  13. The influence of dysfunctional impulsivity and alexithymia on aggressive behavior of psychiatric patients.

    PubMed

    de Schutter, Marja A M; Kramer, Hein J M Th; Franken, Ernest J F; Lodewijkx, Hein F M; Kleinepier, Tom

    2016-09-30

    Current approaches in Dutch mental health care institutions towards inpatients' aggression have focused predominantly on environmental factors, such as training the staff in aggression management. However, personality traits might be an important factor in patients' aggression - as shown by incidents in the wards. This study explores the influence of dysfunctional impulsivity and alexithymia on psychiatric patients' aggressive behavior, through self-reports and through involvement in aggressive incidents. Personality traits influencing patients' aggression emphasize the importance of a more direct approach to their aggression. Clinical patients at Dutch mental health care institution Emergis (n=84) filled out questionnaires about their aggressiveness (using Buss and Perry's Aggression Questionnaire Short Form), dysfunctional impulsivity and alexithymia. Multiple regression analyses indicated that dysfunctional impulsivity positively related to self-reported aggressive behavior. The relationship, however, could not be confirmed for inpatients' aggression as reported by the staff on the wards. Unexpectedly affective alexithymia negatively related to hostility. Gender differences in self-reported aggression were found. Female patients showed higher levels of hostility. Regression analyses indicated that the male gender positively related to physical aggression. Findings emphasize the importance of a new approach in Dutch mental health care, in which patients may engage in aggression-regulation training programs. PMID:27387554

  14. Anxiety, Alexithymia, and Depression as Mediators of the Association between Childhood Abuse and Eating Disordered Behavior in African American and European American Women

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mazzeo, Suzanne E.; Mitchell, Karen S.; Williams, Larry J.

    2008-01-01

    This study evaluated structural equation models of the associations among family functioning, childhood abuse, depression, anxiety, alexithymia, and eating disorder symptomatology in a sample of 412 European American and 192 African American female undergraduates. Additionally, the specific roles of anxiety, depression, and alexithymia as…

  15. The association between depression and craving in alcohol dependency is moderated by gender and by alexithymia factors.

    PubMed

    Luminet, Olivier; Cordovil de Sousa Uva, Mariana; Fantini, Carole; de Timary, Philippe

    2016-05-30

    Alexithymia is a multifaceted personality trait that involves difficulties in identifying and describing feelings to others, a poor fantasy life and an externally oriented cognitive style. Alexithymia has been described as a vulnerability factor for mental and physical diseases. We investigated in a group of 158 alcohol-dependent patients (103 men, 55 women) the association between depression and craving for alcohol when these patients were starting a detoxification program, and the moderating impact of gender and alexithymia on this relation. We first found an interaction between depression and gender in the prediction of craving in the sense that only for women an increase in depressive mood was related to an increase in total craving. When examining gender separately, we found that alexithymia factors acted as moderators. For women, the link between depression and craving was strengthened for the ones scoring higher on "difficulties describing feelings". But for men, the link between depression and craving was reduced for the ones scoring higher on "externally-oriented thinking". These findings suggest that in some cases that need to be identified more systematically in the future, the "externally-oriented thinking" alexithymia factor can exert - at least in the short term - some protective effects. PMID:27137959

  16. Potential link between body dysmorphic disorder symptoms and alexithymia in an eating-disordered treatment-seeking sample.

    PubMed

    Fenwick, Andrea Siân; Sullivan, Karen Anne

    2011-09-30

    This study aimed to explore the manifestation of body dysmorphic disorder symptoms in a sample of people with eating disorders and to investigate possible associations between body dysmorphia and alexithymia. Forty patients currently seeking treatment for an eating disorder completed a battery of six measures assessing alexithymia, mood, eating behaviours, weight-related body image, body dysmorphia and non-weight related body image. Significant moderate positive correlations (Pearson's r) between selected variables were found, suggesting that participants with high levels of dysmorphic concern (imagined ugliness) have more difficulty with the affective elements of alexithymia, that is, identifying and describing feelings. When depression, eating attitudes, and weight-related body image concerns were controlled for, significant moderate positive correlations between this alexithymia factor and dysmorphic concerns remained present. An independent-samples t-test between eating-disordered participants with and without symptoms of body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) revealed significant group differences in difficulties identifying feelings. This pattern of results was replicated when the groups were identified on the basis of dysmorphic concerns, as opposed to BDD symptoms. This study highlights the associations between alexithymia and body dysmorphia that have not previously been demonstrated. PMID:21803428

  17. Intestinal parasites in metropolitan Toronto day-care centres.

    PubMed Central

    Keystone, J S; Yang, J; Grisdale, D; Harrington, M; Pillon, L; Andreychuk, R

    1984-01-01

    In 1981, 900 children (aged 3 months to 10 years) and 146 staff attending 22 day-care centres in metropolitan Toronto chosen at random provided a stool specimen in a survey for intestinal parasites. Of the children, 4% to 36% were infected in 20 of 22 centres. Overall, 19% of the children and 14% of the staff had intestinal parasites: 8.6% and 4.0% respectively had Dientamoeba fragilis, and 7.8% and 2.0% respectively had Giardia lamblia. The highest prevalence of dientamebiasis was in the 7- to 10-year-olds, whereas giardiasis was detected most frequently in the 6-year-olds. Infection with intestinal parasites was not correlated with age, sex, duration in the day-care centre, dog ownership, travel history, gastrointestinal symptoms or the proportion of children in the day-care centre who were born in less developed countries. Immigrant children and children of parents born in industrialized countries (including Canada) were more likely to be infected than were children born in Canada of parents from the developing world. Dientamebiasis was associated with cat ownership. Thus, intestinal protozoa--in particular, D. fragilis and G. lamblia--are endemic in Toronto day-care centres. PMID:6478361

  18. Diphtheria and tetanus immunity among blood donors in Toronto

    PubMed Central

    Yuan, L; Lau, W; Thipphawong, J; Kasenda, M; Xie, F; Bevilacqua, J

    1997-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To determine the diphtheria and tetanus antitoxin levels among blood donors in Toronto. DESIGN: Cross-sectional seroprevalence study. SETTING: Two fixed-site blood-donation clinics in Toronto from September to November 1994. PARTICIPANTS: Blood donors 20 years of age or older were eligible to participate; of the 781 eligible donors, 710 (90.9%) participated in the study. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Diphtheria and tetanus antitoxin levels and factors associated with disease susceptibility, such as vaccination history, country of birth, age and sex. A diphtheria antitoxin level lower than 0.01 lU/mL and a tetanus antitoxin level lower than 0.15 lU/mL were considered nonprotective. RESULTS: Among the participants, 147 (20.7%) had a diphtheria antitoxin level in the nonprotective range, and 124 (17.5%) had a tetanus antitoxin level that was nonprotective. Increasing age and lack of written vaccination records were associated with susceptibility to the 2 diseases. Birth outside Canada was significantly related to tetanus susceptibility. CONCLUSION: Adults over 50 years of age who did not know their vaccination history were the least likely to be protected against diphtheria and tetanus. The greatest benefit of any immunization strategy would be gained by targeting this group. PMID:9099166

  19. SITE DEMONSTRATION BULLETIN: SOIL RECYCLING TREATMENT TRAIN - THE TORONTO HARBOUR COMMISSIONERS

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Toronto Harbour Commissioners (THC) have developed a soil treatment train designed to treat inorganic and organic contaminants in soils. THC has conducted a large-scale demonstration of these technologies in an attempt to establish that contaminated soils at the Toronto Port...

  20. Streaming in Toronto and Other Ontario Schools: A Review of the Literature. No. 157.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cheng, Maisy; And Others

    An overview is provided of streaming in the Toronto school system and a summary of studies presented from Toronto and other Ontario school systems which have examined the relationships between streaming and academic achievement, ethnic background, social origin and future placement of students. Streaming is defined as the placement of pupils in…

  1. TORONTO HARBOUR COMMISSIONERS (THC) SOIL RECYCLE TREATMENT TRAIN - APPLICATIONS ANALYSIS REPORT

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Toronto Harbour Commissioners (THC) have developed a soil treatment train designed to treat inorganic and organic contaminants in soils. THC has conducted a large-scale demonstration of these technologies in an attempt to establish that contaminated soils at the Toronto Port ...

  2. Toronto First Duty: Integrating Kindergarten, Childcare, and Parenting Support to Help Diverse Families Connect to Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pelletier, Janette; Corter, Carl

    2005-01-01

    The focus of this article is a research and development project underway in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The project is Toronto First Duty, reflecting that the "first duty of a state is to see that every child born therein shall be well-housed, clothed, fed, and educated, till it attain years of discretion," according to 19th century British social…

  3. Minority Ethnic Television in Toronto and Los Angeles: Two North American Approaches to Multiculturalism.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stoloff, David L.

    Toronto (Ontario, Canada) and Los Angeles (California) are two cities that provide television programs for specific ethnic groups. During a sample week, 13 percent of the total broadcast time of stations serving Greater Toronto was devoted to programs for ethnic groups. In another sample week, minority ethnic broadcasts took up 17 percent of the…

  4. Evaluation of Strength in the ``Toronto'' Osseous-Prosthesis System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giacomo, R.; Cicciã¹, M.; Dini, R.; Franceschini, G.; Maiorana, C.

    2010-06-01

    Several surgical techniques like are today available in order to recovery large bone defects of the jaw. Aim of the surgeon is to obtain a good tridimensional volume to place dental implant and to recovery the patient’s aesthetics and function. Several prosthetic solution were considered for prosthetic rehabilitation. However after a bone graft surgery Toronto screwed prosthesis on dental implants, following Branemark intuitions, was considered the better prosthetic rehabilitation solution. According to Wölff, the dental implants osteointegration is related to the strengths directed to mandibular bone. Our investigation’s aim is to underline through FEM analysis the stress over the prosthetic elements and over bone surface in order to help the surgeon choice about the dental implant positioning, and at the same time reducing the bone trauma on the patients.

  5. Atmospheric dry and wet deposition of mercury in Toronto

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Xiaotong; Siddiqi, Zia; Song, Xinjie; Mandiwana, Khakhathi L.; Yousaf, Muhammad; Lu, Julia

    2012-04-01

    Atmospheric mercury (Hg) speciation and deposition are critical in understanding the cycling of mercury in the environment. To estimate the dry and wet deposition of mercury in an urban environment, concentrations of gaseous elemental mercury (GEM), gaseous oxidized inorganic mercury (GOIM), mercury associated with particles having size less than 2.5 μm (Hg(p) < 2.5) (December 2003-November 2004) and total particulate mercury (THg(p)) (June 2004-December 2004) in the atmosphere, as well as the concentrations of methyl mercury (MeHg) and total mercury (THg) in atmospheric precipitation samples (June 2005-January 2006 and September 2007-March 2008), were measured in downtown Toronto, Canada.The dry deposition rates of GOIM, Hg(p) < 2.5 μm and THg(p) estimated between December 2003 and December 2004 were 0.17-2.33 μg m-2 month-1, 0.04-0.32 μg m-2 month-1 and 0.17-1.11 μg m-2 month-1, respectively, while the wet deposition rates of methyl mercury and total mercury between June 2005-January 2006 and September 2007-March 2008 were 0.01-0.08 μg m-2 month-1 and 0.32-8.48 μg m-2 month-1, respectively. The total dry deposition (7.66-26.06 μg m-2 a-1, calculated as the sum of GOIM and THg(p) deposition) and the total wet deposition (= the wet deposition of total mercury = 18.60 μg m-2 a-1) contributed proportionally to the total atmospheric Hg deposition in Toronto.

  6. Child Maltreatment, Subsequent Non-Suicidal Self-Injury and the Mediating Roles of Dissociation, Alexithymia and Self-Blame

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Swannell, Sarah; Martin, Graham; Page, Andrew; Hasking, Penelope; Hazell, Philip; Taylor, Anne; Protani, Melinda

    2012-01-01

    Objective: Although child maltreatment is associated with later non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI), the mechanism through which it might lead to NSSI is not well understood. The current retrospective case-control study examined associations between child maltreatment and later NSSI, and investigated the mediating roles of dissociation, alexithymia,…

  7. Alexithymia and its impact on quality of life in a group of Brazilian women with migraine without aura

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Migraine is a type of primary headache widely known for its impact on quality of life of patients. Although the psychological aspects of the disease are receiving increasing attention in current research, some of them, as alexithymia, are still seldom explored. This study aimed to provide evidence on the relationships between markers of depression, anxiety, alexithymia, self-reflection, insight and quality of life in migraine. Methods Forty female outpatients from a Brazilian specialized headache hospital service and a paired control group were compared. Results The results revealed that women with migraine had higher levels of depression, anxiety and alexithymia, and lower levels of quality of life, self-reflection and insight, compared to controls. Quality of life in women with migraine was predicted by levels of depression and one alexithymia factor (ability to express emotions and fantasies). A binary regression analysis between clinical and control groups revealed the migraine group to comprise individuals with high anxiety, low quality of life in the physical domain and the presence of a concrete thinking style. Conclusions The results highlight the relevance of considering psychological variables in the routine healthcare practices for migraine patients in general, while keeping steady attention to individual case features. PMID:23565860

  8. Early school leaving among immigrants in Toronto secondary schools.

    PubMed

    Anisef, Paul; Brown, Robert S; Phythian, Kelli; Sweet, Robert; Walters, David

    2010-05-01

    While education statistics confirm that there is little difference in the dropout rates of native-born and immigrant youth, analyses of Toronto District School Board (TDSB) data have revealed significant variation in school persistence within immigrant groups. Among newcomer youth, the decision to leave school early has been reported to be strongly influenced by socioeconomic status as well as such factors as country of origin, age at arrival, generational status, family structure, and academic performance. While living in low-income conditions is thought to place both foreign- and Canadian-born youth at risk of poor school performance and early school withdrawal, their substantially higher incidence of poverty suggests that today's immigrant youth are likely to face greater obstacles to academic success that may in turn have detrimental, long-term consequences. This paper uses TDSB data to investigate the extent to which living below the low-income cutoff affects the likelihood of dropping out of secondary school, while taking into account generational status as well as a variety risk factors, noted above. Policy implications are discussed. PMID:20853810

  9. Growing urban health: community gardening in South-East Toronto.

    PubMed

    Wakefield, Sarah; Yeudall, Fiona; Taron, Carolin; Reynolds, Jennifer; Skinner, Ana

    2007-06-01

    This article describes results from an investigation of the health impacts of community gardening, using Toronto, Ontario as a case study. According to community members and local service organizations, these gardens have a number of positive health benefits. However, few studies have explicitly focused on the health impacts of community gardens, and many of those did not ask community gardeners directly about their experiences in community gardening. This article sets out to fill this gap by describing the results of a community-based research project that collected data on the perceived health impacts of community gardening through participant observation, focus groups and in-depth interviews. Results suggest that community gardens were perceived by gardeners to provide numerous health benefits, including improved access to food, improved nutrition, increased physical activity and improved mental health. Community gardens were also seen to promote social health and community cohesion. These benefits were set against a backdrop of insecure land tenure and access, bureaucratic resistance, concerns about soil contamination and a lack of awareness and understanding by community members and decision-makers. Results also highlight the need for ongoing resources to support gardens in these many roles. PMID:17324956

  10. Bateson's two Toronto addresses, 1921: 2. Evolutionary faith.

    PubMed

    Cock, A G

    1989-01-01

    William Bateson's plenary address to the American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting in Toronto in 1921 was titled "Evolutionary Faith and Modern Doubts." In it he expressed his deep-seated skepticism about the causes of evolution (and in particular, his dissatisfaction with Darwinian natural selection) while reaffirming his belief in the reality of evolution itself. The address led to controversy at both the scientific and popular levels. Scientific criticism centered on Bateson's rejection of natural selection; popular controversy, as evidenced by contemporary newspaper clippings, was very widespread, not least because religious fundamentalists misrepresented Bateson in their campaign against evolution. I draw attention to the forgotten case of F.E. Dean, a superintendent of schools at Fort Sumner, New Mexico, who in 1922 was forced to resign his post for merely challenging a resolution of the local school board banning the teaching of evolution in schools. Dean deserves to be remembered, along with John T. Scopes, as an early hero of the continuing fight for the right to teach evolution in U.S. schools. PMID:2647826

  11. Brain activation during the perception of stressful word stimuli concerning interpersonal relationships in anorexia nervosa patients with high degrees of alexithymia in an fMRI paradigm.

    PubMed

    Miyake, Yoshie; Okamoto, Yasumasa; Onoda, Keiichi; Shirao, Naoko; Okamoto, Yuri; Yamawaki, Shigeto

    2012-02-28

    Several studies have reported that anorexia nervosa (AN) patients have high levels of alexithymia. However, relatively little is known about the underlying neurobiological relationships between alexithymia and AN. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to examine the brain responses in 30 AN patients and 20 healthy women during the processing of negative words concerning interpersonal relationships. We investigated the relationship between alexithymia levels and brain activation in AN. AN patients showed significant activation of the orbitofrontal cortex, dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and medial prefrontal cortex while processing negative words concerning interpersonal relationships, as compared to the processing of neutral words. Moreover, the subjective rating of unpleasantness with negative words and neural activities in the amygdala, posterior cingulate cortex (PCC) and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) negatively correlated with the level of alexithymia in AN. Our neuroimaging results suggest that AN patients tend to cognitively process negative words concerning interpersonal relationships, resulting in activation of the prefrontal cortex. Lower activation of the amygdala, PCC and ACC in response to these words may contribute to the impairments of emotional processing that are hallmarks of alexithymia. Functional abnormalities associated with alexithymia may be involved in the emotional processing impairments in AN patients. PMID:22398299

  12. Emissions of VPOC from residences in the metropolitan Toronto area

    SciTech Connect

    Fellin, P.; Otson, R.

    1997-12-31

    Airborne vapor phase organic compound (VPOC) concentrations were determined indoors and outdoors concurrently over 24 h periods for 44 randomly selected residences in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). Indoor to outdoor air exchange rates, measured by means of a perfluorocarbon tracer technique, averaged 0.45 and ranged from 0.04 to 2.2 air changes per hour (ach). For compounds occurring above the method detection limits (MDL), indoor sources contributed significantly to the occurrence of 7 of the 30 target VPOC since indoor to outdoor concentration ratios were greater than 1 for more than 50% of the homes for these compounds. Emissions from residences to the ambient air were calculated, and ranged up to 725 g/yr/residence for the sum of the target compounds for the residence with the largest emissions and averaged 96 g/yr/residence for all residences. The four compounds with the largest emissions averaged 53 (maximum, 500), 41 (maximum, 220), 22 (maximum, 110) and 20 (maximum, 240) g/yr/residence, respectively, for 1,4-dichlorobenzene, d-limonene, naphthalene and toluene. In a previous study, 1,4-dichlorobenzene and toluene were among the three VPOC with the greatest emissions from residences. However, the emissions were calculated from measured indoor concentrations, outdoor values were obtained at different times or by different methods, and average rather than individually measured air exchange rates were used. The emissions estimated in this study were compared to those from the previous study, and their impact on ambient air quality was estimated.

  13. Working with Toronto neighbourhoods toward developing indicators of community capacity.

    PubMed

    Jackson, Suzanne F; Cleverly, Shelley; Poland, Blake; Burman, David; Edwards, Richard; Robertson, Ann

    2003-12-01

    Often the goal of health and social development agencies is to assess communities and work with them to improve community capacity. Particularly for health promoters working in community settings and to ensure consistency in the definition of health promotion, the evaluation of health promotion programmes should be based on strengths and assets, yet existing information for planning and evaluation purposes usually focuses on problems and deficits. A model and definition of community capacity, grounded in community experience and focusing on strengths and assets, was developed following a 4-year, multi-site, qualitative, action research project in four Toronto neighbourhoods. There was significant community involvement in the four Community Advisory Committees, one for each study site. Semi-structured, open-ended interviews and focus groups were conducted with 161 residents and agency workers identified by the Community Advisory Committees. The data were analyzed with the assistance of NUDIST software. Thematic analysis was undertaken in two stages: (i) within each site and (ii) across sites, with the latter serving as the basis for the development of indicators of community capacity. This paper presents a summary of the research, the model and the proposed indicators. The model locates talents and skills of community members in a larger context of socioenvironmental conditions, both inside and outside the community, which can act to enable or constrain the expression of these talents and skills. The significance of the indicators of community capacity proposed in the study is that they focus on identifying and measuring the facilitating and constraining socioenvironmental conditions. PMID:14695365

  14. Health status of newly arrived refugees in Toronto, Ont

    PubMed Central

    Redditt, Vanessa J.; Janakiram, Praseedha; Graziano, Daniela; Rashid, Meb

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Objective To determine the prevalence of selected infectious diseases among newly arrived refugee patients and whether there is variation by key demographic factors. Design Retrospective chart review. Setting Primary care clinic for refugee patients in Toronto, Ont. Participants A total of 1063 refugee patients rostered at the clinic from December 2011 to June 2014. Main outcome measures Demographic information (age, sex, and region of birth); prevalence of HIV, hepatitis B, hepatitis C, Strongyloides, Schistosoma, intestinal parasites, gonorrhea, chlamydia, and syphilis infections; and varicella immune status. Results The median age of patients was 29 years and 56% were female. Refugees were born in 87 different countries. Approximately 33% of patients were from Africa, 28% were from Europe, 14% were from the Eastern Mediterranean Region, 14% were from Asia, and 8% were from the Americas (excluding 4% born in Canada or the United States). The overall rate of HIV infection was 2%. The prevalence of hepatitis B infection was 4%, with a higher rate among refugees from Asia (12%, P < .001). Hepatitis B immunity was 39%, with higher rates among Asian refugees (64%, P < .001) and children younger than 5 years (68%, P < .001). The rate of hepatitis C infection was less than 1%. Strongyloides infection was found in 3% of tested patients, with higher rates among refugees from Africa (6%, P = .003). Schistosoma infection was identified in 15% of patients from Africa. Intestinal parasites were identified in 16% of patients who submitted stool samples. Approximately 8% of patients were varicella nonimmune, with higher rates in patients from the Americas (21%, P < .001). Conclusion This study highlights the importance of screening for infectious diseases among refugee patients to provide timely preventive and curative care. Our data also point to possible policy and clinical implications, such as targeted screening approaches and improved access to vaccinations and

  15. Mismatched racial identities, colourism, and health in Toronto and Vancouver.

    PubMed

    Veenstra, Gerry

    2011-10-01

    Using original telephone survey data collected from adult residents of Toronto (n = 685) and Vancouver (n = 814) in 2009, I investigate associations between mental and physical health and variously conceived racial identities. An 'expressed racial identity' is a self-identification with a racial grouping that a person will readily express to others when asked to fit into official racial classifications presented by Census forms, survey researchers, insurance forms, and the like. Distinguishing between Asian, Black, South Asian, and White expressed racial identities, I find that survey respondents expressing Black identity are the most likely to report high blood pressure or hypertension, a risk that is slightly attenuated by socioeconomic status, and that respondents expressing Asian identity are the most likely to report poorer self-rated mental health and self-rated overall health, risks that are not explained by socioeconomic status. I also find that darker-skinned Black respondents are more likely than lighter-skinned Black respondents to report poor health outcomes, indicating that colourism, processes of discrimination which privilege lighter-skinned people of colour over their darker-skinned counterparts, exists and has implications for well-being in Canada as it does in the United States. Finally, 'reflected racial identity' refers to the racial identity that a person believes that others tend to perceive him or her to be. I find that expressed and reflected racial identities differ from one another for large proportions of self-expressed Black and South Asian respondents and relatively few self-expressed White and Asian respondents. I also find that mismatched racial identities correspond with relatively high risks of various poor health outcomes, especially for respondents who consider themselves White but believe that others tend to think they are something else. I conclude by presenting a framework for conceptualizing multifaceted suites of racial

  16. Source Attribution of Toronto Regional Air Pollution Measured with Fourier Transform Spectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whaley, C.; Strong, K.; Jones, D. B.; Fast, H.; Fogal, P. F.; McLinden, C. A.; Mittermeier, R. L.; Pommier, M.

    2013-12-01

    Toronto is the centre of Canada's largest population and is often downwind of the industrial midwestern United States, where there is an even larger population and significant anthropogenic emissions. As a result, surface O3 in the region often exceeds the Canada-Wide Standard and the provincial Ambient Air Quality Criterion. Therefore, the Toronto region makes for an interesting North-American site to study atmospheric composition. There have been ground-based, solar-absorption Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopic measurements of tropospheric (0-5 km) O3 and CO columns (among other species) for over a decade at the Univerisity of Toronto Atmospheric Observatory (TAO, 43.66oN, 79.40oW, 174 masl) and Environment Canada's Centre for Atmospheric Research Experiments (CARE, 44.23oN, 79.78oW, 251 masl). In combination with surface measurements of these species from the Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Environment Canada, and satellite overpasses of the Measurements of Pollution in the Troposphere (MOPITT) instrument, we have a large number of tropospheric O3 and CO observations in both downtown Toronto and the surrounding rural area from 2002 to the present. Using these datasets, we have examined pollution events in Toronto characterized by enhanced O3 and/or CO tropospheric columns, and we have conducted source attribution analyses using the GEOS-Chem chemical transport model and its adjoint. We will present several case studies, in which we quantify the relative contribution of biomass burning, anthropogenic emissions, and biogenic emissions to Toronto-area pollution events. We will discuss the conditions for which the tropospheric columns are well-correlated to the surface measurements, and when they are not. We will also present statistics on nine years of data (2002 to 2010), to better understand when and how the Toronto-area O3 and CO enhancements occur, which will be useful for future air quality policies.

  17. Toronto area ozone: Long-term measurements and modeled sources of poor air quality events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whaley, C. H.; Strong, K.; Jones, D. B. A.; Walker, T. W.; Jiang, Z.; Henze, D. K.; Cooke, M. A.; McLinden, C. A.; Mittermeier, R. L.; Pommier, M.; Fogal, P. F.

    2015-11-01

    The University of Toronto Atmospheric Observatory and Environment Canada's Centre for Atmospheric Research Experiments each has over a decade of ground-based Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy measurements in southern Ontario. We present the Toronto area FTIR time series from 2002 to 2013 of two tropospheric trace gases—ozone and carbon monoxide—along with surface in situ measurements taken by government monitoring programs. We interpret their variability with the GEOS-Chem chemical transport model and determine the atmospheric conditions that cause pollution events in the time series. Our analysis includes a regionally tagged O3 model of the 2004-2007 time period, which quantifies the geographical contributions to Toronto area O3. The important emission types for 15 pollution events are then determined with a high-resolution adjoint model. Toronto O3, during pollution events, is most sensitive to southern Ontario and U.S. fossil fuel NOx emissions and natural isoprene emissions. The sources of Toronto pollution events are found to be highly variable, and this is demonstrated in four case studies representing local, short-, middle-, and long-range transport scenarios. This suggests that continental-scale emission reductions could improve air quality in the Toronto region. We also find that abnormally high temperatures and high-pressure systems are common to all pollution events studied, suggesting that climate change may impact Toronto O3. Finally, we quantitatively compare the sensitivity of the surface and column measurements to anthropogenic NOx emissions and show that they are remarkably similar. This work thus demonstrates the usefulness of FTIR measurements in an urban area to assess air quality.

  18. Alexithymia, Emotional Dysregulation, and Recovery from Alcoholism: Therapeutic Response to Assessment of Mood

    PubMed Central

    Krentzman, Amy R.; Higgins, Margaret M.; Staller, Karen M.; Klatt, Emily S.

    2015-01-01

    This study is a secondary analysis of a randomized controlled trial which tested the effects of a gratitude intervention on well-being in a sample of individuals in outpatient treatment for alcohol use disorder (AUD). Follow-up qualitative interviews unexpectedly revealed that participants found the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS) to be helpful to their recovery in the ways that it asked them to identify and rate their emotions. Participant statements were purposively sampled and analyzed using grounded theory methods to produce a conceptual framework illustrating the process of mood identification and its sequelae. Evidence of existing alexithymia and emotional dysregulation, dominance of negative mood, and increasing ability to identify, accept, and regulate mood as part of recovery was found. Findings suggest that emotion regulation is a compelling topic for those in recovery from AUD, and may deserve a more prominent role in treatment. PMID:25810468

  19. Inventorying Toronto's single detached housing stocks to examine the availability of clay brick for urban mining.

    PubMed

    Ergun, Deniz; Gorgolewski, Mark

    2015-11-01

    This study examines the stocks of clay brick in Toronto's single detached housing, to provide parameters for city scale material reuse and recycling. Based on consensus from the literature and statistics on Toronto's single detached housing stocks, city scale reusable and recyclable stocks were estimated to provide an understanding of what volume could be saved from landfill and reintroduced into the urban fabric. On average 2523-4542 m(3) of brick was determined to be available annually for reuse, which would account for 20-36% of the volume of virgin brick consumed in new house construction in 2012. A higher volume, 6187 m(3) of brick, was determined to be available annually for recycling because more of the prevalence of cement-based mortar, which creates challenges for brick reuse in Toronto. The results demonstrated that older housing containing reusable brick were being mostly landfilled and replaced with housing that contained only recyclable brick. PMID:25912626

  20. Accountability in the City of Toronto's 10 long-term care homes.

    PubMed

    Wyers, Lindsay; Gamble, Brenda; Deber, Raisa B

    2014-09-01

    Long-term care (LTC) residential homes provide a supportive environment for residents requiring nursing care and assistance with daily living activities. The LTC sector is highly regulated. We examine the approaches taken to ensure the delivery of quality and safe care in 10 LTC homes owned and operated by the City of Toronto, Ontario, focusing on mandatory accountability agreements with the Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs). Results are based on document review and seven interviews with LTC managers responsible for the management and operation of the 10 LTC homes. One issue identified was the challenges associated with implementing new legislative and regulatory requirements to multiple bodies with differing requirements, particularly when boundaries do not coincide (e.g., the City of Toronto's Long-Term Care Homes and Services Division must establish 10 different accountability agreements with the five LHINs that span into the City of Toronto's geographic area). PMID:25305393

  1. Accountability in the City of Toronto's 10 Long-Term Care Homes

    PubMed Central

    Wyers, Lindsay; Gamble, Brenda; Deber, Raisa B.

    2014-01-01

    Long-term care (LTC) residential homes provide a supportive environment for residents requiring nursing care and assistance with daily living activities. The LTC sector is highly regulated. We examine the approaches taken to ensure the delivery of quality and safe care in 10 LTC homes owned and operated by the City of Toronto, Ontario, focusing on mandatory accountability agreements with the Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs). Results are based on document review and seven interviews with LTC managers responsible for the management and operation of the 10 LTC homes. One issue identified was the challenges associated with implementing new legislative and regulatory requirements to multiple bodies with differing requirements, particularly when boundaries do not coincide (e.g., the City of Toronto's Long-Term Care Homes and Services Division must establish 10 different accountability agreements with the five LHINs that span into the City of Toronto's geographic area). PMID:25305393

  2. Report of haemoglobin J-Toronto and alpha thalassemia in a family from North of Iran.

    PubMed

    Mahdavi, Mohammad Reza; Bayat, Nooshin; Hadavi, Valeh; Karami, Hosein; Roshan, Payam; Najmabadi, Hossein; Rohanizadeh, Hamed

    2012-04-01

    We report of an Iranian family with history of a rare haemoglobin variant, Haemoglobin J associated with alpha thalassemia, discovered while performing premarital thalassemia screening. In the present study we report the first case of haemoglobin J-Toronto [alpha 5 (A3) Ala > Asp] on -globin gene, found in a 16-year-old female from Mazandaran Province, North of Iran. Further investigation characterized the same mutation for mother and brother of the proband, whilst mother was also a carrier of an alpha thalassemia gene mutation (-alpha3.7). Haemoglobin J-Toronto was previously just reported from Canada and has not been found in any part of Iran. PMID:22755290

  3. Technology evaluation report: Toronto Harbour Commissioners (THC) soil recycle treatment train

    SciTech Connect

    Ehrenreich, L.C.; Matuson, A.; Peters, J.; Evans, J.

    1993-07-01

    The report summarizes the results and activities of the demonstration testing of Toronto Harbor Commissioners (THC) Soil Recycle Treatment Train. The Demonstration was conducted at a site within the Port Industrial District (PID) in Toronto, Ontario, Canada under the Superfund Innovative Technology Evaluation (SITE) Program developed by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The demonstration examined a part of THC's on-going evaluation of the treatment train during the first nine months of 1992. EPA elected to sample the process during the processing of Soil B, which based on field sampling, was expected to exhibit relatively high organic (oil and grease, s) and inorganic (heavy metals) contaminants.

  4. The Hong Fook experience: working with ethnocultural communities in Toronto 1982-2002.

    PubMed

    Lo, Hung-Tat; Chung, Raymond C Y

    2005-09-01

    The experience of the first 20 years of a community mental health service for the Asian communities in Toronto, the Hong Fook Mental Health Association, is presented within the context of the overall development of mental health services to ethnocultural minorities in Toronto and Canada. The various people involved and the relationships with other stakeholders are described. Through the discussion, the socio-political and cultural factors contributing to its successes and failures are highlighted. The future for Hong Fook, and the mental health system at large, is considered. The article finishes with an outline of the philosophical basis that has sustained Hong Fook's development. PMID:16268238

  5. Schooling Transnational Speakers of the Societal Language: Language Variation Policy-Making in Madrid and Toronto

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schecter, Sandra R.; García Parejo, Isabel; Ambadiang, Théophile; James, Carl E.

    2014-01-01

    A cross-national comparative study in Toronto, Ontario, Canada and Madrid, Spain examines educational policies and practices that target immigrant students for whom the language variety normally spoken in the host country represents a second dialect. Policy contexts and schooling environments of the two urban centres were analyzed to gain deeper…

  6. Critical Theory of Education and Ethnicity: The Case Study of the Toronto Community.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shamai, Shmuel

    1987-01-01

    The main theories linking education and ethnicity are reviewed and evaluated, using the Jewish population in Toronto as an example. An alternative framework for analyzing nondominant minority communities is presented. There is a need to be more specific with concepts such as cultural resistance and reproduction to give them more pluralistic…

  7. Managing Conduct: A Comparative Policy Analysis of Safe Schools Policies in Toronto, Canada and Buffalo, USA

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Winton, Sue

    2011-01-01

    Public school districts in Buffalo, USA and Toronto, Canada reviewed their safe schools policies in 2008. Revised Codes of Conduct are compared to earlier versions and each other, and a conceptual policy web is used to understand how local, state/provincial, national, and international influences affect local safe school policies. The comparison…

  8. Reading the Urban Landscape: The Case of a Campus Tour at York University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bardekjian, Adrina; Classens, Michael; Sandberg, L. Anders

    2012-01-01

    This paper presents a campus tour assignment in a first-year undergraduate environmental studies course at York University, Toronto, Canada. As a pedagogical tool, the assignment enables students to interrogate the dominant narratives of a university's immediate physical spaces and to apply broader theoretical and practical concepts to their…

  9. The Application of the Systems Approach to School Building in Toronto.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Robbie, Roderick G.

    A description is presented of the building system program developed by the Metropolitan Toronto School Board, Study of Educational Facilities. The organization of the project is discussed, and the rationale is presented for the selection of an open systems approach to the School Board's building needs. Detailed information is given regarding the…

  10. Toronto Harbour Commissioners (THC) soil recycle treatment train. Applications analysis report

    SciTech Connect

    Ehrenreich, L.C.; Matuson, A.; Peters, J.; Evans, J.

    1993-04-01

    This project consists of a demonstration of the Toronto Harbour Commissioners (THC) Soil Recycle Treatment Train. The treatment train consists of three processes. The first process utilizes an attrition soil wash process to separate relatively uncontaminated soil from a more heavily contaminated fine slurry. The contaminated fine slurry is then further processed in a metals removal process or a bioslurry reactor process or both to remove organic contaminants and heavy metals contamination. The Toronto Harbour Commissioners conducted a long-term evaluation of this treatment train at a 55 tons per day pilot plant at 185 Cherry Street in the port of Toronto, located in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The Superfund Innovative Technology Evaluation (SITE) Program conducted a demonstration project that examined in detail the processing of soil from one of the sites being evaluated in the overall project. The goals of this study were to evaluate the technical effectiveness and economics of a treatment process sequence and to assess the potential applicability of the process to other wastes and/or other Superfund and hazardous waste sites.

  11. Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome and the Delivery of Continuing Medical Education: Case Study from Toronto

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Davis, Dave; Ryan, David; Sibbald, Gary; Rachlis, Anita; Davies, Sharon; Manchul, Lee; Parikh, Sagar

    2004-01-01

    Introduction: Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) struck Toronto in the spring of 2003, causing many deaths, serious morbidity, forced quarantine of thousands of individuals, and the closure of all provincial hospitals for several weeks. Given the direction by public health authorities to cancel or postpone all continuing medical education…

  12. Everyday Racism in Canadian Schools: Ideologies of Language and Culture among Korean Transnational Students in Toronto

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shin, Hyunjung

    2015-01-01

    Drawing from a 2.4-year ethnography with Korean Early Study Abroad (ESA, pre-college-aged study abroad) students in Toronto high schools, I examine the intersections among race, class, language, culture and citizenship (including immigrant status) in the identity construction and language learning of these students. Conceptualising race as a…

  13. TORONTO HARBOUR COMMISSIONERS (THC) SOIL RECYCLE TREATMENT TRAIN - APPLICATIONS ANALYSIS REPORT

    EPA Science Inventory

    This project consists of a demonstration of the Toronto Harbour Commissioners (THC) Soil Recycle Treatment Train. he treatment train consists of three processes. he first process utilizes an attrition soil wash process to separate relatively uncontaminated soil from a more heavil...

  14. Women's Class Strategies as Activism in Native Community Building in Toronto, 1950-1975

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Howard-Bobiwash, Heather

    2003-01-01

    Between the end of World War II and the early 1970s, many Native women in Ontario came to Toronto in the hopes of accessing higher education, jobs, and freedom denied them on reserves under the oppression of federal government tutelage. However, much of the literature on Native rural-urban migration in Canada concentrates on an association between…

  15. Multiliteracies, Pedagogy and Identities: Teacher and Student Voices from a Toronto Elementary School

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Giampapa, Frances

    2010-01-01

    In this article, I draw on an ethnographic case study of one Toronto elementary school, as part of a Canada-wide action research project: Multiliteracy Project (www.multiliteracies.ca). I have explored how Perminder, a grade-4 teacher, developed a multiliteracies pedagogy, drawing on her own and her students' identities and linguistic and cultural…

  16. Citizenship Education Practices of Politically Active Teachers in Porto Alegre, Brazil and Toronto, Canada

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Myers, John P.

    2007-01-01

    This research examined the ways politically active secondary teachers, involved either in formal politics or in social movements, practiced citizenship education in Porto Alegre, Brazil, and Toronto, Canada. The author's aim was to explore the complex ways and multiple spaces in which these teachers' roles as both citizens and citizenship…

  17. White Fear: Analyzing Public Objection to Toronto's Africentric School

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Levine-Rasky, Cynthia

    2014-01-01

    In September 2009, the Toronto District School Board opened a publicly funded Africentric alternative school that today serves a population of about 135 students. While the founding of the eponymous school was the result of successful advocacy on the part of African-Canadian communities in the city, it was met with controversy. Readily observed in…

  18. Alexithymia, Assertiveness and Psychosocial Functioning in HIV: Implications for Medication Adherence and Disease Severity.

    PubMed

    McIntosh, Roger C; Ironson, Gail; Antoni, Michael; Fletcher, Mary Ann; Schneiderman, Neil

    2016-02-01

    Psychosocial function and adherence to antiretroviral regimen are key factors in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) disease management. Alexithymia (AL) is a trait deficit in the ability to identify and describe feelings, emotions and bodily sensations. A structural equation model was used to test whether high levels of AL indirectly relate to greater non-adherent behavior and HIV disease severity via psychosocial dysfunction. Blood draws for HIV-1 viral load and CD4 T-lymphocyte, along with psychosocial surveys were collected from 439 HIV positive adults aged 18-73 years. The structural model supports significant paths from: (1) AL to non-active patient involvement, psychological distress, and lower social support, (2) psychological distress and non-active involvement to non-adherent behavior, and (3) non-adherence to greater HIV disease severity (CFI = .97, RMSEA = .04, SRMR = .05). A second model confirmed the intermediary effect of greater patient assertiveness on the path from AL to social support and non-active patient involvement (CFI = .94, RMSEA = .04, SRMR = .05). Altogether, AL is indirectly linked with HIV disease management through it's association with poor psychosocial function, however greater patient assertiveness buffers the negative impact of AL on relationship quality with healthcare providers and members of one's social support network. PMID:26143246

  19. Reduced empathic concern leads to utilitarian moral judgments in trait alexithymia

    PubMed Central

    Patil, Indrajeet; Silani, Giorgia

    2014-01-01

    Recent research with moral dilemmas supports dual-process model of moral decision making. This model posits two different paths via which people can endorse utilitarian solution that requires personally harming someone in order to achieve the greater good (e.g., killing one to save five people): (i) weakened emotional aversion to the prospect of harming someone due to reduced empathic concern for the victim; (ii) enhanced cognition which supports cost-benefit analysis and countervails the prepotent emotional aversion to harm. Direct prediction of this model would be that personality traits associated with reduced empathy would show higher propensity to endorse utilitarian solutions. As per this prediction, we found that trait alexithymia, which is well-known to have deficits in empathy, was indeed associated with increased utilitarian tendencies on emotionally aversive personal moral dilemmas and this was due to reduced empathic concern for the victim. Results underscore the importance of empathy for moral judgments in harm/care domain of morality. PMID:24904510

  20. The impact of gentrification on ethnic neighbourhoods in Toronto: a case study of little Portugal.

    PubMed

    Murdie, Robert; Teixeira, Carlos

    2011-01-01

    Despite extensive literature on the nature and impact of gentrification, there has been little consideration of the effects of gentrification on ethnic neighbourhoods. This study evaluates the negative and positive effects of gentrification on the Portuguese in west central Toronto. Details concerning the settlement patterns of the Portuguese, the characteristics of Portuguese residents and patterns of gentrification in inner-city Toronto were obtained from census data. Evaluations of neighbourhood change and attitudes of the residents towards gentrification were obtained from key informant and focus group interviews. The results suggest considerable ambivalence among the respondents, but most agreed that the long-term viability of Little Portugal as an immigrant reception area with a good supply of low-cost housing is in doubt. PMID:21174893

  1. Energy solutions, neo-liberalism, and social diversity in Toronto, Canada.

    PubMed

    Teelucksingh, Cheryl; Poland, Blake

    2011-01-01

    In response to the dominance of green capitalist discourses in Canada's environmental movement, in this paper, we argue that strategies to improve energy policy must also provide mechanisms to address social conflicts and social disparities. Environmental justice is proposed as an alternative to mainstream environmentalism, one that seeks to address systemic social and spatial exclusion encountered by many racialized immigrants in Toronto as a result of neo-liberal and green capitalist municipal policy and that seeks to position marginalized communities as valued contributors to energy solutions. We examine Toronto-based municipal state initiatives aimed at reducing energy use while concurrently stimulating growth (specifically, green economy/green jobs and 'smart growth'). By treating these as instruments of green capitalism, we illustrate the utility of environmental justice applied to energy-related problems and as a means to analyze stakeholders' positions in the context of neo-liberalism and green capitalism, and as opening possibilities for resistance. PMID:21318023

  2. Trend analysis of long-term temperature time series in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mohsin, Tanzina; Gough, William A.

    2010-08-01

    As the majority of the world’s population is living in urban environments, there is growing interest in studying local urban climates. In this paper, for the first time, the long-term trends (31-162 years) of temperature change have been analyzed for the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). Annual and seasonal time series for a number of urban, suburban, and rural weather stations are considered. Non-parametric statistical techniques such as Mann-Kendall test and Theil-Sen slope estimation are used primarily for the assessing of the significance and detection of trends, and the sequential Mann test is used to detect any abrupt climate change. Statistically significant trends for annual mean and minimum temperatures are detected for almost all stations in the GTA. Winter is found to be the most coherent season contributing substantially to the increase in annual minimum temperature. The analyses of the abrupt changes in temperature suggest that the beginning of the increasing trend in Toronto started after the 1920s and then continued to increase to the 1960s. For all stations, there is a significant increase of annual and seasonal (particularly winter) temperatures after the 1980s. In terms of the linkage between urbanization and spatiotemporal thermal patterns, significant linear trends in annual mean and minimum temperature are detected for the period of 1878-1978 for the urban station, Toronto, while for the rural counterparts, the trends are not significant. Also, for all stations in the GTA that are situated in all directions except south of Toronto, substantial temperature change is detected for the periods of 1970-2000 and 1989-2000. It is concluded that the urbanization in the GTA has significantly contributed to the increase of the annual mean temperatures during the past three decades. In addition to urbanization, the influence of local climate, topography, and larger scale warming are incorporated in the analysis of the trends.

  3. Ethnocultural and sex characteristics of patients attending a tertiary care pain clinic in Toronto, Ontario

    PubMed Central

    Mailis-Gagnon, Angela; Yegneswaran, Balaji; Nicholson, Keith; Lakha, SF; Papagapiou, Marios; Steiman, Amanda J; Ng, Danny; Cohodarevic, Tea; Umana, Margarita; Zurowski, Mateusz

    2007-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Ethnocultural factors and sex may greatly affect pain perception and expression. Emerging literature is also documenting racial and ethnic differences in pain access and care. OBJECTIVE: To define the sex and ethnocultural characteristics of patients attending a tertiary care, university-affiliated pain clinic in Toronto, Ontario. METHODS: Data were collected on 1242 consecutive, new patients seen over a three-year period at the Comprehensive Pain Program (CPP) in downtown Toronto. Data were compared with the Canada 2001 Census. RESULTS: English-speaking, Canadian-born patients constituted 58.6% of the CPP population, similar to the 2001 Canadian Census data for the Greater Toronto Area. Certain visible minority groups (Indo-Pakistani and Chinese) were significantly under-represented, while European groups were over-represented. While women outnumbered men, they presented with lower levels of physical pathology in general, particularly in certain ethnic groups. Patients from Europe (representing primarily immigrants who arrived in Canada before 1960), were older, by 10 years to 15 years, than the average CPP population, and had a much higher incidence of physical or medical disorders. CONCLUSIONS: The implications of the study and the importance of sex and ethnicity in terms of presentation to Canadian pain clinics are discussed. Future well-designed studies are needed to shed light on the role of both patients’ and physicians’ ethnicity and sex in pain perception and expression, decision-making regarding pain treatments and acceptance of pain treatments. PMID:17505571

  4. Rescuing 100 Years of Data from the Toronto and Agincourt Magnetic Observatories

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Springford, A.; Thomson, D. J.; Riegert, D. L.

    2014-12-01

    We have an ongoing project to digitize a geomagnetic record that began in the 1840s at the Toronto magnetic observatory, on what is now the campus of the University of Toronto. As the city of Toronto grew, the observatory was relocated to Agincourt in 1898, and finally to Ottawa in 1968. The record provides a rare opportunity for high resolution study of geomagnetic phenomena far into the past and over a long time scale. The magnetograms, originally recorded on photographic paper, were transferred to 35mm film in the 1980s. We are now converting these film copies to digital images and devising algorithms for unsupervised extraction of the time series data contained therein. Using the digital images, we are able to extract data with a time resolution of approximately 15 seconds, a magnetic resolution of approximately 0.1 nT, and 24-bit quantization. Spectra computed from the extracted time series are characteristic of spectra computed from current digital instruments, indicating that the extracted data are of high quality. Unsupervised extraction is important for reproducibility and because there are in excess of 32,000 images totalling about 500Gb of computer storage. However, given that perfect extraction performance is impossible due to varying image quality, artefacts such as hand-written notes, and quirks of the recording device, we are developing a semi-supervised approach to ensure data quality.

  5. Better governance in academic health sciences centres: moving beyond the Olivieri/Apotex Affair in Toronto.

    PubMed

    Ferris, L E; Singer, P A; Naylor, C D

    2004-02-01

    The Toronto experience suggests that there may be several general lessons for academic health sciences complexes to learn from the Olivieri/Apotex affair (OAA) regarding the ethics, independence, and integrity of clinical research sponsored by for profit enterprises. From a local perspective, the OAA occurred when there already was a focus on the complex and changing relationships among the University of Toronto, its medical school, the fully affiliated teaching hospitals, and off campus faculty because of intertwined interests and responsibilities. The OAA became a catalyst that accelerated various systemic reforms, particularly concerning academic/industry relations. In this article, the evolving governance framework for the Toronto academic health sciences complex is reviewed and these policy and process reforms discussed. These reforms have created collaborative activity among research ethics boards and contract research offices of the partner institutions, and allowed the joint university/hospital ethics centre to play a role in governance and policy, while respecting the missions and mandates of the involved institutions. Although few of the policies are dramatically innovative, what is arguably novel is the elaboration of an overarching governance framework that aims to move ethics to a central focus in the academic complex. Time alone will tell how sustainable and effective these changes are. PMID:14872067

  6. Affective agnosia: Expansion of the alexithymia construct and a new opportunity to integrate and extend Freud's legacy.

    PubMed

    Lane, Richard D; Weihs, Karen L; Herring, Anne; Hishaw, Alex; Smith, Ryan

    2015-08-01

    We describe a new type of agnosia consisting of an impairment in the ability to mentally represent or know what one is feeling. Freud the neurologist coined the term "agnosia" in 1891 before creating psychoanalysis in 1895 but the term has not been previously applied to the domain of affective processing. We propose that the concept of "affective agnosia" advances the theory, measurement and treatment of what is now called "alexithymia," meaning "lack of words for emotion." We trace the origin of the alexithymia construct and discuss the strengths and limitations of extant research. We review evidence that the ability to represent and put emotions into words is a developmental achievement that strongly influences one's ability to experience, recognize, understand and use one's own emotional responses. We describe the neural substrates of emotional awareness and affective agnosia and compare and contrast these with related conditions. We then describe how this expansion of the conceptualization and measurement of affective processing deficits has important implications for basic emotion research and clinical practice. PMID:26054794

  7. Emotional Awareness, Relationship Quality, and Satisfaction in Patients With Parkinson's Disease and Their Spousal Caregivers.

    PubMed

    Ricciardi, Lucia; Pomponi, Massimiliano; Demartini, Benedetta; Ricciardi, Diego; Morabito, Bruno; Bernabei, Roberto; Bentivoglio, Anna Rita

    2015-08-01

    This study aimed to evaluate the relationship quality and satisfaction in couples, in which one partner had PD, obtaining the perspective of both patients and partner and to examine the impact of alexithymia, empathy, depression, and anxiety on ratings of relationship quality and satisfaction. Fifteen PD patients and partners completed the following scales: the Dyadic Adjustment Scale; Couple Satisfaction Index (CSI); the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale; the Empathy Quotient; the Hamilton Depression and the Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale (HAM-A). We evaluated patients' motor functions by means of Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale and patients' quality of life by means of the PD Questionnaire. Patients were significantly less satisfied with the relationship than their partners as revealed by CSI (p = 0.031) and they were more depressed (p = 0.003) and anxious (p = 0.015). A negative correlation between measures of relationship quality and satisfaction and alexithymia was found in the patients group. No correlations were found between measures of relationship quality and satisfaction (both of patients and partners) and any other demographical and clinical variables. CSI and HAM-A were predictors of patient's social support evaluation. The presence of alexithymia in PD is an important factor affecting relationship quality and satisfaction. PMID:26226241

  8. Are Toronto's streams sick? A look at the fish and benthic invertebrate communities in the Toronto region in relation to the urban stream syndrome.

    PubMed

    Wallace, Angela M; Croft-White, Melanie V; Moryk, Jan

    2013-09-01

    Impacts of urbanization on aquatic ecosystems are intensifying as urban sprawl spreads across the global land base. The urban stream syndrome (USS) identifies "symptoms" associated with urban development including changes in biotic communities, hydrology, water chemistry, and channel morphology. Direct relationships between road density (as surrogate of urbanization) and indicators of the USS were identified for streams in the Toronto region. Significant negative relationships were revealed between road density and biological (fish and benthic macroinvertebrate) richness, diversity, and fish Index of Biotic Integrity scores. Significant positive relationships were found between road density and tolerant fish/benthic macroinvertbrates, benthos Family Biotic Index scores, mean summer stream temperature, stream flashiness, and several water quality variables. Analysis of biological data showed that only four fish species and a reduced number of benthic macroinvertebrate families remained at the most urbanized sites. Road density was found to be a major determinant in both the fish and benthic macroinvertebrate community structure. PMID:23467859

  9. Investigation of facial emotion recognition, alexithymia, and levels of anxiety and depression in patients with somatic symptoms and related disorders

    PubMed Central

    Öztürk, Ahmet; Kiliç, Alperen; Deveci, Erdem; Kirpinar, İsmet

    2016-01-01

    Background The concept of facial emotion recognition is well established in various neuropsychiatric disorders. Although emotional disturbances are strongly associated with somatoform disorders, there are a restricted number of studies that have investigated facial emotion recognition in somatoform disorders. Furthermore, there have been no studies that have regarded this issue using the new diagnostic criteria for somatoform disorders as somatic symptoms and related disorders (SSD). In this study, we aimed to compare the factors of facial emotion recognition between patients with SSD and age- and sex-matched healthy controls (HC) and to retest and investigate the factors of facial emotion recognition using the new criteria for SSD. Patients and methods After applying the inclusion and exclusion criteria, 54 patients who were diagnosed with SSD according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) criteria and 46 age- and sex-matched HC were selected to participate in the present study. Facial emotion recognition, alexithymia, and the status of anxiety and depression were compared between the groups. Results Patients with SSD had significantly decreased scores of facial emotion for fear faces, disgust faces, and neutral faces compared with age- and sex-matched HC (t=−2.88, P=0.005; t=−2.86, P=0.005; and t=−2.56, P=0.009, respectively). After eliminating the effects of alexithymia and depressive and anxious states, the groups were found to be similar in terms of their responses to facial emotion and mean reaction time to facial emotions. Discussion Although there have been limited numbers of studies that have examined the recognition of facial emotion in patients with somatoform disorders, our study is the first to investigate facial recognition in patients with SSD diagnosed according to the DSM-5 criteria. Recognition of facial emotion was found to be disturbed in patients with SSD. However, our findings suggest that

  10. An air dispersion model for the city of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

    PubMed

    Sylvestre-Williams, Barbara; Mehrvar, Mehrab

    2012-01-01

    Air quality is a major concern for the public; therefore, the reliability of accurate models in predicting the air quality is of a major interest. In this study, a Gaussian air dispersion model, known as the Air dispersion model for Road Sources in Urban areaS (ARSUS), was developed to predict the ground level concentrations for a contaminant of interest. It was demonstrated that this model could be used successfully in place of or in conjunction with ambient air monitoring stations in determining the local Air Quality Index (AQI). The ARSUS model was validated against the US EPA ISC3 model before it was used to conduct two studies in this investigation. These two studies simulated weekday morning rush-hour tailpipe emissions of CO and predicted ground level concentrations. The first study used the ARSUS model to predict ground level concentrations of CO from the tailpipe emissions for roads and highways located in the vicinity of the Toronto West ambient air monitoring station. The second study involved an expansion of the domain to predict ground level concentrations of CO from tailpipe emissions from highways in the City of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The predicted concentrations were then compared to the data collected from the Toronto West ambient air monitoring station. The results of the ARSUS model indicated that the air quality in the immediate vicinity of roads or highways is highly impacted by the tailpipe emissions. Higher concentrations were observed for the areas adjacent to the road and highway sources. The tailpipe emissions of CO from highways had a higher contribution to the local air quality. The predicted ground level concentrations from the ARSUS model under-predicted when compared to the observed data from the monitoring station; however, despite this, the predictive model is viable. PMID:22506705

  11. Assessing Greenhouse Gas emissions in the Greater Toronto Area using atmospheric observations (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vogel, F. R.; Chan, E.; Huang, L.; Levin, I.; Worthy, D.

    2013-12-01

    Urban areas are said to be responsible for approximately 75% of anthropogenic Greenhouse Gases (GHGs) emissions while comprising only two percent of the land area [1]. This limited spatial expansion should facilitate a monitoring of anthropogenic GHGs from atmospheric observations. As major sources of emissions, cities also have a huge potential to drive emissions reductions. To effectively manage emissions, cities must however, first measure and report these publicly [2]. Modelling studies and measurements of CO2 from fossil fuel burning (FFCO2) in densely populated areas does, however, pose several challenges: Besides continuous in-situ observations, i.e. finding an adequate atmospheric transport model, a sufficiently fine-grained FFCO2 emission model and the proper background reference observations to distinguish the large-scale from the local/urban contributions to the observed FFCO2 concentration offsets ( ΔFFCO2) are required. Pilot studies which include the data from two 'sister sites*' in the vicinity of Toronto, Canada helped to derive flux estimates for Non-CO2 GHGs [3] and improve our understanding of urban FFCO2 emissions. Our 13CO2 observations reveal that the contribution of natural gas burning (mostly due to domestic heating) account for 80%×7% of FFCO2 emissions in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) during winter. Our 14CO2 observations in the GTA, furthermore, show that the local offset of CO2 (ΔCO2) between our two sister sites can be largely attributed to urban FFCO2 emissions. The seasonal cycle of the observed ΔFFCO2 in Toronto, combined with high-resolution atmospheric modeling, helps to independently assess the contribution from different emission sectors (transportation, primary energy and industry, domestic heating) as predicted by a dedicated city-scale emission inventory, which deviates from a UNFCCC-based inventory. [1] D. Dodman. 2009. Blaming cities for climate change? An analysis of urban greenhouse gas emissions inventories

  12. Toronto, Canada

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rofes, Eric

    2003-01-01

    This article introduces Karleen Pendleton Jimenez's book for young children, "Are You a Boy or a Girl?", represents a landmark achievement in queer literature in the early childhood classroom and deserves special attention by pre-school and primary teachers, academics working in early childhood education, and parents, particularly parents with…

  13. An international comparison of cancer survival: Toronto, Ontario, and Detroit, Michigan, metropolitan areas.

    PubMed Central

    Gorey, K. M.; Holowaty, E. J.; Fehringer, G.; Laukkanen, E.; Moskowitz, A.; Webster, D. J.; Richter, N. L.

    1997-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: This study examined whether socioeconomic status has a differential effect on the survival of adults diagnosed with cancer in Canada and the United States. METHODS: The Ontario Cancer Registry and the National Cancer Institute's Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) program provided a total of 58,202 and 76,055 population-based primary malignant cancer cases for Toronto, Ontario, and Detroit, Mich, respectively. Socioeconomic data for each person's residence at time of diagnosis were taken from population censuses. RESULTS: In the US cohort, there was a significant association between socioeconomic status and survival for 12 of the 15 most common cancer sites; in the Canadian cohort, there was no such association for 12 of the 15 sites. Among residents of low-income areas, persons in Toronto experienced a survival advantage for 13 of 15 cancer sites at 1- and 5-year follow-up. No such between-country differentials were observed in the middle- or high-income groups. CONCLUSIONS: The consistent pattern of a survival advantage in Canada observed across various cancer sites and follow-up periods suggests that Canada's more equitable access to preventive and therapeutic health care services is responsible for the difference. PMID:9240106

  14. Energy Solutions, Neo-Liberalism, and Social Diversity in Toronto, Canada

    PubMed Central

    Teelucksingh, Cheryl; Poland, Blake

    2011-01-01

    In response to the dominance of green capitalist discourses in Canada’s environmental movement, in this paper, we argue that strategies to improve energy policy must also provide mechanisms to address social conflicts and social disparities. Environmental justice is proposed as an alternative to mainstream environmentalism, one that seeks to address systemic social and spatial exclusion encountered by many racialized immigrants in Toronto as a result of neo-liberal and green capitalist municipal policy and that seeks to position marginalized communities as valued contributors to energy solutions. We examine Toronto-based municipal state initiatives aimed at reducing energy use while concurrently stimulating growth (specifically, green economy/green jobs and ‘smart growth’). By treating these as instruments of green capitalism, we illustrate the utility of environmental justice applied to energy-related problems and as a means to analyze stakeholders’ positions in the context of neo-liberalism and green capitalism, and as opening possibilities for resistance. PMID:21318023

  15. The management of child abuse and neglect cases in schools: the Toronto model.

    PubMed

    McClare, G

    1983-01-01

    School staffs have a major role in the prevention, identification and referral of cases of child abuse and neglect. School administrators, teachers and school support staffs require knowledge about abuse and neglect, as well as a clear set of guidelines and procedures for dealing with it if they are to carry out these responsibilities effectively. The Toronto Board of Education has developed a program that has involved superintendents, principals, teachers, pupil personnel staff, caretakers, secretaries and community resources in an educational program oriented to the management of child abuse cases in their schools. The Board's Child Abuse Committee has developed a document which outlines employees' responsibilities under the legislation, provides assistance in the identification of child abuse and neglect cases, and outlines procedures for referral both internally and to the community. The document was used as the base for an extensive staff development program during the school year 1979-80, in which all of the system's 6,000 school based employees participated. The Toronto Board's Child Abuse Program incorporated the establishment of the position "Resource Person, Child Abuse" for the purpose of consultation with school staffs, as well as the ongoing provision of resource material and staff training. The paper outlines the development of the program, includes guidelines and procedures for school staffs, the legislation under which it operates, the content of the training program, and an evaluation of the program with suggestions for replication. PMID:6684980

  16. Realizing Partnership Potential: A Report on a Formal Collaboration between a Teaching and Learning Centre and Libraries at the University of Toronto

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bolan, John; Bellamy, Patricia; Rolheiser, Carol; Szurmak, Joanna; Vine, Rita

    2015-01-01

    In 2010, the University of Toronto's Centre for Teaching Support & Innovation (CTSI) and University of Toronto Libraries (UTL) jointly launched Partnering for Academic Student Success (PASS), a partnership to foster new opportunities for collaboration between academic librarians and those involved in developing excellence in university…

  17. Stable carbon isotope ratios of ambient secondary organic aerosols in Toronto

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saccon, M.; Kornilova, A.; Huang, L.; Moukhtar, S.; Rudolph, J.

    2015-09-01

    A method to quantify concentrations and stable carbon isotope ratios of secondary organic aerosols has been applied to study atmospheric nitrophenols in Toronto, Canada. The sampling of five nitrophenols, all with substantial secondary formation from the photooxidation of aromatic volatile organic compounds (VOCs), was conducted in the gas phase and particulate matter (PM) together and in PM alone. Their concentrations in the atmosphere are in the low ng m-3 range and, consequently, a large volume of air (> 1000 m3) is needed to analyze samples for stable carbon isotope ratios, resulting in sampling periods of typically 24 h. While this extended sampling period increases the representativeness of average values, it at the same time reduces possibilities to identify meteorological conditions or atmospheric pollution levels determining nitrophenol concentrations and isotope ratios. Average measured carbon isotope ratios of the different nitrophenols are between -34 and -33 ‰, which is well within the range predicted by mass balance. However, the observed carbon isotope ratios cover a range of nearly 9 ‰ and approximately 20 % of the isotope ratios of the products have isotope ratios lower than predicted from the kinetic isotope effect of the first step of the reaction mechanism and the isotope ratio of the precursor. This can be explained by isotope fractionation during reaction steps following the initial reaction of the precursor VOCs with the OH radical. Limited evidence for local production of nitrophenols is observed since sampling was done in the Toronto area, an urban center with significant anthropogenic emission sources. Strong evidence for significant local formation of nitrophenols is only found for samples collected in summer. On average, the difference in carbon isotope ratios between nitrophenols in the particle phase and in the gas phase is insignificant, but for a limited number of observations in summer, a substantial difference is observed. This

  18. Using FTIR measurements of stratospheric composition to identify midlatitude polar vortex intrusions over Toronto

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Whaley, C.; Strong, K.; Adams, C.; Bourassa, A. E.; Daffer, W. H.; Degenstein, D. A.; Fast, H.; Fogal, P. F.; Manney, G. L.; Mittermeier, R. L.; Pavlovic, B.; Wiacek, A.

    2013-11-01

    Using 11 years of trace gas measurements made at the University of Toronto Atmospheric Observatory (43.66°N, 79.40°W) and Environment Canada's Centre for Atmospheric Research Experiments (44.23°N, 79.78°W), along with derived meteorological products, we identify a number of polar intrusion events, which are excursions of the polar vortex or filaments from the polar vortex extending down to midlatitudes. These events are characterized by enhanced stratospheric columns (12-50 km) of hydrogen fluoride (HF), by diminished stratospheric columns of nitrous oxide (N2O), and by a scaled potential vorticity above 1.2 × 10-4s-1. The events comprise 16%of winter/spring (November to April inclusive) Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopic measurements from January 2002 to March 2013, and we find at least two events per year. The events are corroborated by Modèle Isentrope du transport Méso-échelle de l'Ozone Stratosphérique par Advection, Modern-Era Retrospective Analysis for Research and Applications potential vorticity maps, and Global Modeling Initiative N2O maps. During polar intrusion events, the stratospheric ozone (O3) columns over Toronto are usually greater than when there is no event. Our O3 measurements agree with the Optical Spectrograph and Infrared Imaging System satellite instrument and are further verified with the Earth Probe Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer and Ozone Monitoring Instrument satellite observations. We find six cases out of 53 for which chemical O3depletion within the polar vortex led to a reduction in stratospheric O3 columns over Toronto. We have thus identified a dynamical cause for most of the winter/spring variability of stratospheric trace gas columns observed at our midlatitude site. While there have been a number of prior polar intrusion studies, this is the first study to report in the context of 11 years of ground-based FTIR column measurements, providing insight into the frequency of midlatitude polar vortex intrusions

  19. A Guide to Research Collections in Microform in the University of Toronto Library. Reference Series No. 19.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wagle, Iqbal, Comp.

    The microform collections of the University of Toronto Library are described with instructions for readers who wish to use them. The collections consist of microform reproductions of rare, out-of-print material and government documents. The entries are alphabetically arranged. Each is composed of details of subject coverage, bibliographical access…

  20. "Fear of Stigmatisation": Black Canadian Youths' Reactions to the Implementation of a Black-Focused School in Toronto

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gordon, Megan K.; Zinga, Dawn M.

    2012-01-01

    The black-focused school introduced by the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) in 2009 has been controversial since the community consultations were conducted. Although media representations and Dei (1996, 2006) provide insight into what Torontonians' reactions are to the proposed black-focused school, the reactions of black youth in the Greater…

  1. Academic Achievement, Academic Self-Concept, and Academic Motivation of Immigrant Adolescents in the Greater Toronto Area Secondary Schools

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Areepattamannil, Shaljan; Freeman, John G.

    2008-01-01

    The study examined the self-reported academic achievement, academic self-concept, and academic motivation of 573 immigrant and nonimmigrant adolescents in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) secondary schools. Descriptive Discriminant Analyses indicated that the immigrant adolescents had higher performance in mathematics, higher math and school…

  2. Homeworking: Home Office or Home Sweatshop? Report on Current Conditions of Homeworkers in Toronto's Garment Industry. NALL Working Paper.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ng, Roxana; Wong, Renita Yuk-Lin; Choi, Angela

    The current conditions of home workers in the garment industry in Toronto, Canada, were examined through in-depth telephone interviews with 30 Chinese-speaking immigrant women who were employed as home workers in 1999. The paper dicusses the formal training and informal learning experiences of immigrant woman who are garment workers. A comparison…

  3. The 1991 Every Secondary Student Survey, Part II: Detailed Profiles of Toronto's Secondary School Students. No. 204.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cheng, Maisy; And Others

    In November 1991 a survey was conducted of all students in Toronto (Ontario, Canada) secondary schools. The initial report gave demographic information about the student population. This report includes subgroup profiles, such as the characteristics of female versus male students, the similarities and differences among racial and ethnic groups,…

  4. The Ethnic Elderly in Metro Toronto Hospitals, Nursing Homes, and Homes for the Aged: Communication and Health Care.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Saldov, Morris; Chow, Peter

    1994-01-01

    Developed database on ethnic elderly persons; examined extent of communication problems they face in hospitals, nursing homes, and homes for aged in Metro Toronto; and reported on institutional response. Nursing home supervisors (n=77) reported that communication was essential to health care needs of ethnic elderly individuals. Most health care…

  5. Boundary Spanners and Advocacy Leaders: Black Educators and Race Equality Work in Toronto and London, 1968-1995

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Lauri

    2016-01-01

    This comparative study examines the historical development of race equality efforts during the 1970s and 1980s in two global cities--Toronto and London--and the role of African Canadian and Black British educators in longstanding school-community partnerships. I characterize the leadership stance of Black educators as boundary spanners and…

  6. DEVELOPMENTS AT TENTH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON WATER POLLUTION RESEARCH HELD AT TORONTO, CANADA ON JUNE 23-27, 1980

    EPA Science Inventory

    This report is an interpretive analysis of formal and informal developments at the Tenth International Conference on Water Pollution Research held in Toronto, Canada, on June 23-27, 1980. Pertinent conference developments are summarized and categorized as follows: modelling of la...

  7. Tapping into the "Standing-Reserve": A Comparative Analysis of Workers' Training Programmes in Kolkata and Toronto

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Maitra, Saikat; Maitra, Srabani

    2015-01-01

    This paper examines employment-related training programmes offered by state funded agencies and multinational corporations in Toronto (Canada) and Kolkata (India). In recent years both cities have witnessed a rise in the service sector industries aligned with global regimes of flexible work and the consequent reinvention of a worker subject that…

  8. 'By Just What Procedure Am I To Be Guillotined?': Academic Freedom in the Toronto Forestry Faculty between the Wars.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kuhlberg, Mark

    2002-01-01

    Focuses on the University of Toronto (Canada) forestry faculty; university president Robert Falconer's firing of W. N. Millar, an outspoken professor; and the politically sensitive university climate during early 20th century. Dissention over Millar's firing brought focus on limited academic freedom of speech and caused further restriction of…

  9. Population Structure and Antimicrobial Resistance of Invasive Serotype IV Group B Streptococcus, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

    PubMed Central

    Teatero, Sarah; McGeer, Allison; Li, Aimin; Gomes, Janice; Seah, Christine; Demczuk, Walter; Martin, Irene; Wasserscheid, Jessica; Dewar, Ken; Melano, Roberto G.

    2015-01-01

    We recently showed that 37/600 (6.2%) invasive infections with group B Streptococcus (GBS) in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, were caused by serotype IV strains. We report a relatively high level of genetic diversity in 37 invasive strains of this emerging GBS serotype. Multilocus sequence typing identified 6 sequence types (STs) that belonged to 3 clonal complexes. Most isolates were ST-459 (19/37, 51%) and ST-452 (11/37, 30%), but we also identified ST-291, ST-3, ST-196, and a novel ST-682. We detected further diversity by performing whole-genome single-nucleotide polymorphism analysis and found evidence of recombination events contributing to variation in some serotype IV GBS strains. We also evaluated antimicrobial drug resistance and found that ST-459 strains were resistant to clindamycin and erythromycin, whereas strains of other STs were, for the most part, susceptible to these antimicrobial drugs. PMID:25811284

  10. Weather sensitivity for zoo visitation in Toronto, Canada: a quantitative analysis of historical data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hewer, Micah J.; Gough, William A.

    2016-03-01

    Based on a case study of the Toronto Zoo (Canada), multivariate regression analysis, involving both climatic and social variables, was employed to assess the relationship between daily weather and visitation. Zoo visitation was most sensitive to weather variability during the shoulder season, followed by the off-season and, then, the peak season. Temperature was the most influential weather variable in relation to zoo visitation, followed by precipitation and, then, wind speed. The intensity and direction of the social and climatic variables varied between seasons. Temperatures exceeding 26 °C during the shoulder season and 28 °C during the peak season suggested a behavioural threshold associated with zoo visitation, with conditions becoming too warm for certain segments of the zoo visitor market, causing visitor numbers to decline. Even light amounts of precipitation caused average visitor numbers to decline by nearly 50 %. Increasing wind speeds also demonstrated a negative influence on zoo visitation.

  11. Toronto Psoriatic Arthritis Screening (ToPAS) questionnaire: a report from the GRAPPA 2009 annual meeting.

    PubMed

    Chandran, Vinod; Gladman, Dafna D

    2011-03-01

    The Toronto Psoriatic Arthritis Screening questionnaire (ToPAS) was developed as a tool to screen for psoriatic arthritis (PsA) in patients with psoriasis as well as in the general population. Thus, it differs from PsA-specific screening tools and may be used to screen for PsA in epidemiologic and family investigations. In a presentation at the 2009 annual meeting of GRAPPA (Group for Research and Assessment of Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis) in Stockholm, Sweden, the authors described the development, testing, and validation of the ToPAS tool. Results of a comparison of the ToPAS questionnaire with the Psoriatic Arthritis Screening and Evaluation (PASE) questionnaire were also presented. Modification and further validation of the ToPAS are under way. PMID:21362783

  12. Lidar measurements of the stratosphere at the Eureka and Toronto NDSC stations

    SciTech Connect

    Pal, S.R.; Carswell, A.I.; Bird, J.; Donovan, D.; Duck, T.; Whiteway, J.

    1996-12-31

    Lidar observations of stratospheric ozone, aerosol and temperature have been carried out at Toronto (43.8N, 79.5W) since 1989 and during winter months at the Arctic Stratospheric Observatory (AStrO) at Eureka (80N, 86W) since 1992. The Raman DIAL (Differential Absorption Lidar) systems utilized at both observatories are briefly described and the measurements are discussed. The measurements at AStrO are discussed in relation to the dynamics of stratospheric polar vortex and the presence of polar stratospheric clouds (PSC). Results from the winters of 1994/95 and 1995/96 indicate very low polar stratospheric temperatures, capable of inducing polar stratospheric clouds (PSCs) and exhibit an appreciable ozone depletion.

  13. Bringing hope and change: a study of youth probation officers in Toronto.

    PubMed

    Umamaheswar, Janani

    2013-09-01

    Although youth probation (in some countries described as youth justice or youth offending work) has been widely discussed in older and more recent criminological literature, less attention has been paid to youth probation officers' accounts of their attitudes and strategies. In this study, the author uses in-depth interviews with 20 youth probation officers in Toronto, examining officers' attitudes toward the youth they work with and how these attitudes are reflected in the strategies that the officers use to achieve their professional goals. Findings reveal that the officers balance their authoritative and supportive roles not only to hold youth accountable, to encourage them to assert control over their lives, and to maintain optimism about the possibility of a nondeviant life, but also to assist the youth in attaining the means and resources necessary to make positive changes. These findings are interpreted within the framework of Canadian youth justice legislation as well as the broader desistance literature. PMID:22573709

  14. Tensions in providing services to South Asian victims of wife abuse in Toronto.

    PubMed

    Agnew, V

    1998-04-01

    This article examines the tensions in providing services to South Asian victims of wife abuse in Toronto, Canada. It focuses on major community-based organizations of South Asian women, particularly on the South Asian Family Support Services. These community-based organizations provide services to non-English speaking, working-class immigrant women. This study found out that the dependency towards state funds for their programs necessitates them to modify their feminist agendas and restrain their criticisms of patriarchal society. Yet, these organizations have made no attempts in looking for other ways to operate without state funding. Community-based groups have to balance the immediate needs of the women they serve against their long-term feminist goals of reducing violence by men and destabilizing the patriarchal state. Although they give importance to securing access to social services for these women, supporting them does little to reveal the systematic power relations behind wife abuse. PMID:12295439

  15. Dietary Calcium: a low priority in treatment of essential hypertension by Toronto family practitioners

    PubMed Central

    Hayman, EK

    1986-01-01

    A sample of Toronto family practitioners was surveyed in order to ascertain whether increased dietary calcium was recommended in the treatment of essential hypertension. It was found that in excess of four-fifths of the same make no dietary calcium recommendations. It was concluded that this was the result of one or more of the following: 1. the low priority granted to nutrition in medical schools and continuing education courses contributes to a lack of awareness of nutritional therapies; 2. the relatively small body of literature pertaining to calcium and hypertension in contrast to the large volume of publications concerning drug therapies may contribute to a lack of familiarity with the research into calcium and hypertension; 3. the fact that the data to date have not established a definite causal relationship between low dietary calcium and hypertension may contribute to a lack of conviction as to the efficacy of increased dietary calcium as a treatment.

  16. Energy effects of heat-island reduction strategies in Toronto,Canada

    SciTech Connect

    Akbari, Hashem; Konopacki, Steven

    2003-08-26

    The effect of heat-island reduction (HIR) strategies on annual energy savings and peak-power avoidance of the building sector of the Greater Toronto Area is calculated, using an hourly building energy simulation model. Results show that ratepayers could realize potential annual energy savings of over $11M from the effects of HIR strategies. The residential sector accounts for over half (59%) of the total savings, offices 13% and retail stores 28%. Savings from cool roofs are about 20%, shade trees 30%, wind shielding of trees 37%, and ambient cooling by trees and reflective surfaces 12%. These results are preliminary and highly sensitive to the relative price of gas and electricity. Potential annual electricity savings are estimated at about 150GWh and potential peak-power avoidance at 250MW.

  17. Concentrations in air of organobromine, organochlorine and organophosphate flame retardants in Toronto, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shoeib, Mahiba; Ahrens, Lutz; Jantunen, Liisa; Harner, Tom

    2014-12-01

    Concentrations of organobromine (BFRs), organochlorine (CFRs) and organophosphate esters flame retardants and plasticizers (PFRs) in air were monitored for over one year at an urban site in Toronto, Canada during 2010-2011. The mean value for polybrominated diphenyl ethers (BDEs) (gas + particle phase) was 38 pg/m3 with BDE-47 and BDE-99 as the dominant congeners. The mean concentrations in air for ∑non-BDE (BFRs and CFRs), was 9.6 pg/m3 - about four times lower than the BDEs. The brominated FRs: TBP-AE, BTBPE, EH-TBB, BEH-TEBP and the chlorinated syn- and anti-DP were detected frequently, ranging from 87% to 96%. Highest concentrations in air among all flame retardant classes were observed for the Σ-PFRs. The yearly mean concentration in air for ΣPFRs was 2643 pg/m3 with detection frequency higher than 80%. Except for TBP-AE and b- DBE-DBCH, non-BDEs (BFRs, CFRs and PFRs) were mainly associated with the particle phase. BDE concentrations in air were positively correlated with temperature indicating that volatilization from local sources was an important factor controlling levels in air. This correlation did not hold for most BFRs, CFRs and PFRs which were mainly on particles. For these compounds, air concentrations in Toronto are likely related to emissions from point sources and advective inputs. This study highlights the importance of urban air monitoring for FRs. Urban air can be considered a sentinel for detecting changes in the use and application of FRs in commercial products.

  18. Health and growth status of immigrant and refugee children in Toronto, Ontario: A retrospective chart review

    PubMed Central

    Salehi, Leila; Lofters, Aisha K; Hoffmann, Susan M; Polsky, Jane Y; Rouleau, Katherine D

    2015-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: To describe selected anthropometric and health status variables among immigrant and refugee children ≤6 years of age within an inner city clinic in Toronto, Ontario. METHODS: A retrospective chart review of patients born between January 1, 1998 and December 31, 2008, was conducted at a Toronto community health centre serving a primarily immigrant and refugee population. Outcome measures included calculated age-specific percentiles for height and weight, and the prevalence of anemia, iron deficiency, enteric parasites, elevated lead levels, HIV and hepatitis B. Postal codes were collected and used to determine the patient’s neighbourhood income quintile. RESULTS: A total of 331 patients, born between January 1, 1998 and December 31, 2008, were identified. Of these, a total of 210 charts were manually reviewed. The prevalence of height-for-age and weight-for-age under the third percentile on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Growth Charts were 7.2% and 11.6%, respectively, and 8.4% and 5.0%, respectively, on the WHO Growth Standards Chart. Prevalence rates were also calculated for anemia (22.8%), iron deficiency (53.3%), hepatitis B (2.5%), parasitic infections (33.6%), elevated blood lead levels (4.9%) and HIV (0%). Neighbourhood income quintiles revealed that 46.7% of patients were residing in the lowest (ie, poorest) income quintile neighbourhoods. CONCLUSION: These findings reveal a high burden of illness within the population presenting to an immigrant/refugee health clinic, and illustrate the need for further research in this area, as well as increased efforts to ensure appropriate screening within clinics serving a high volume of newcomer patients. PMID:26744562

  19. Sources of personal exposure to fine particles in Toronto, Ontario, Canada

    SciTech Connect

    David Kim; Andrea Sass-Kortsak; James T. Purdham; Robert E. Dales; Jeffrey R. Brook

    2005-08-01

    Individuals are exposed to particulate matter from both indoor and outdoor sources. The aim of this study was to compare the relative contributions of three sources of personal exposure to fine particles (PM2.5) by using chemical tracers. The study design incorporated repeated 24-hr personal exposure measurements of air pollution from 28 cardiac-compromised residents of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Each study participant wore the Rupprecht & Patashnick ChemPass Personal Sampling System 1 day a week for a maximum of 10 weeks. During their individual exposure measurement days the subjects reported to have spent an average of 89% of their time indoors. Particle phase elemental carbon, sulfate, and calcium personal exposure data were used in a mixed-effects model as tracers for outdoor PM2.5 from traffic-related combustion, regional, and local crustal materials, respectively. These three sources were found to contribute 13% {+-} 10%, 17% {+-}16%, and 7% {+-} 6% of PM2.5 exposures. The remaining fraction of the personal PM2.5 is hypothesized to be predominantly related to indoor sources. For comparison, central site outdoor PM2.5 measurements for the same dates as personal measurements were used to construct a receptor model using the same three tracers. In this case, traffic-related combustion, regional, and local crustal materials were found to contribute 19% {+-} 17%, 52% {+-} 22%, and 10% {+-} 7%, respectively. The results indicate that the three outdoor PM2.5 sources considered are statistically significant contributors to personal exposure to PM2.5. The results also suggest that among the Toronto subjects, who spent a considerable amount of time indoors, exposure to outdoor PM2.5 includes a greater relative contribution from combustion sources compared with outdoor PM2.5 measurements where regional sources are the dominant contributor. 56 refs., 3 figs., 6 tabs.

  20. Variability of atmospheric ammonia related to potential emission sources in downtown Toronto, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, Qingjing; Zhang, Leiming; Evans, Greg J.; Yao, Xiaohong

    2014-12-01

    The variability of atmospheric ammonia (NH3) in downtown Toronto was investigated through the analysis of 24 hr integrated denuder NH3 samples collected at a site above a street canyon every third day from July 2003 to September 2011 (Dataset 1). The measured NH3 mixing ratios ranged from below the detection limit to 14.7 ppb during the eight-year period. Distinctive seasonal variations were observed with summer averages (±standard deviation) of 3.9 ± 1.6 ppb and winter averages of 1.1 ± 0.6 ppb. Two other datasets, weekly/biweekly passive samples of NH3 monitored at 74 agricultural and remote sites across southern Ontario during the period of June 2006 to March 2007 (Dataset 2) and semi-continuous measurements of NH3 and ammonium (pNH4+) in PM2.5 collected at a site inside a street canyon approximately 170 m away from the downtown site in December 2008 and February, March and May 2009 (Dataset 3), were further used to evaluate the potential NH3 sources in downtown Toronto. The NH3 mixing ratios at the downtown location were higher than those at the surrounding agricultural sites, and the mixing ratios within the street canyon were almost double those measured above it. These results suggested that the observed NH3 at the downtown location was mainly from local sources within the street canyon. Analysis of Dataset 3 showed that the diurnal cycles of NH3 at the downtown location cannot be simply explained by traffic and water consumption patterns. A green space inside the street canyon was identified as a potential important source contributing to the observed NH3 when T > 0 °C. However, the major NH3 emission sources at T ≤ 0 °C are yet to be investigated.

  1. Investigating emotional impairments in adults with autism spectrum disorders and the broader autism phenotype.

    PubMed

    Berthoz, Sylvie; Lalanne, Christophe; Crane, Laura; Hill, Elisabeth L

    2013-08-15

    There is an increasing interest in the socio-affective atypicalities observed in adults with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The aim of this study was to further explore emotional responsiveness in adults with ASD using well-validated self-reports of alexithymia and to determine whether anhedonic features are part of a broader autism phenotype (BAP). Participants comprised 38 adults with ASD, 87 parents of ASD individuals and 47 typical controls. All participants completed the Autism Spectrum Quotient (AQ), the 20-item Toronto Alexithymia Scale, and the Bermond-Vorst Alexithymia Questionnaire, as well as the Chapman Physical and Social Anhedonia Scales. The ASD group differed from controls and parents on most measures, with the exception of physical and social anhedonia, relative to parents. Parents differed from controls on social anhedonia, and a higher proportion of parents were classed as alexithymic, relative to controls. Cluster analysis revealed that some parents share more similarities with ASD participants than with controls. The results suggest that socio-affective impairments characteristic of ASD are part of the BAP. PMID:23747233

  2. Alexithymic features and automatic amygdala reactivity to facial emotion.

    PubMed

    Kugel, Harald; Eichmann, Mischa; Dannlowski, Udo; Ohrmann, Patricia; Bauer, Jochen; Arolt, Volker; Heindel, Walter; Suslow, Thomas

    2008-04-11

    Alexithymic individuals have difficulties in identifying and verbalizing their emotions. The amygdala is known to play a central role in processing emotion stimuli and in generating emotional experience. In the present study automatic amygdala reactivity to facial emotion was investigated as a function of alexithymia (as assessed by the 20-Item Toronto Alexithymia Scale). The Beck-Depression Inventory (BDI) and the State-Trait-Anxiety Inventory (STAI) were administered to measure participants' depressivity and trait anxiety. During 3T fMRI scanning, pictures of faces bearing sad, happy, and neutral expressions masked by neutral faces were presented to 21 healthy volunteers. The amygdala was selected as the region of interest (ROI) and voxel values of the ROI were extracted, summarized by mean and tested among the different conditions. A detection task was applied to assess participants' awareness of the masked emotional faces shown in the fMRI experiment. Masked sad and happy facial emotions led to greater right amygdala activation than masked neutral faces. The alexithymia feature difficulties identifying feelings was negatively correlated with the neural response of the right amygdala to masked sad faces, even when controlling for depressivity and anxiety. Reduced automatic amygdala responsivity may contribute to problems in identifying one's emotions in everyday life. Low spontaneous reactivity of the amygdala to sad faces could implicate less engagement in the encoding of negative emotional stimuli. PMID:18314269

  3. Associations between facial emotion recognition, cognition and alexithymia in patients with schizophrenia: comparison of photographic and virtual reality presentations.

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez-Maldonado, J; Rus-Calafell, M; Márquez-Rejón, S; Ribas-Sabaté, J

    2012-01-01

    Emotion recognition is known to be impaired in schizophrenia patients. Although cognitive deficits and symptomatology have been associated with this impairment there are other patient characteristics, such as alexithymia, which have not been widely explored. Emotion recognition is normally assessed by means of photographs, although they do not reproduce the dynamism of human expressions. Our group has designed and validated a virtual reality (VR) task to assess and subsequently train schizophrenia patients. The present study uses this VR task to evaluate the impaired recognition of facial affect in patients with schizophrenia and to examine its association with cognitive deficit and the patients' inability to express feelings. Thirty clinically stabilized outpatients with a well-established diagnosis of schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder were assessed in neuropsychological, symptomatic and affective domains. They then performed the facial emotion recognition task. Statistical analyses revealed no significant differences between the two presentation conditions (photographs and VR) in terms of overall errors made. However, anger and fear were easier to recognize in VR than in photographs. Moreover, strong correlations were found between psychopathology and the errors made. PMID:22954834

  4. The self to other model of empathy: providing a new framework for understanding empathy impairments in psychopathy, autism, and alexithymia.

    PubMed

    Bird, Geoffrey; Viding, Essi

    2014-11-01

    Despite increasing empirical and theoretical work on empathy, particularly on the content of empathic representations, there is a relative lack of consensus regarding the information processing necessary for empathy to occur. Here we attempt to delineate a mechanistic cognitive model of empathy in order to provide a framework within which neuroimaging work on empathy can be located, and which may be used in order to understand various disorders characterised by atypical levels of empathy. To this end data from individuals with psychopathy, autism, and alexithymia inform the model, and the model is used to provide a unifying framework for any empathy impairments seen in these disorders. The model adopts a developmental framework and tries to address the four difficult questions of empathy: How do we know what another is feeling? What is the role of theory of mind in empathy? How does the state of another cause a corresponding state in the self? How do we represent another's emotion once emotional contagion has taken place? PMID:25454356

  5. Stable carbon isotope ratios of ambient secondary organic aerosols in Toronto

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Saccon, M.; Kornilova, A.; Huang, L.; Moukhtar, S.; Rudolph, J.

    2015-06-01

    A method to quantify concentrations and stable carbon isotope ratios of secondary organic aerosols (SOA) has been applied to study atmospheric nitrophenols in Toronto, Canada. The sampling of five nitrophenols, all primarily formed from the photo-oxidation of aromatic volatile organic compounds (VOC), in the gas phase and particulate matter (PM) together and PM alone was conducted. Since all of the target compounds are secondary products, their concentrations in the atmosphere are in the low ng m-3 range and consequently a large volume of air (> 1000 m3) is needed to analyze samples for stable carbon isotope ratios, resulting in sampling periods of typically 24 h. While this extended sampling period increases the representativeness of average values, it at the same time reduces possibilities to identify meteorological conditions or atmospheric pollution levels determining nitrophenol concentrations and isotope ratios. Average measured carbon isotope ratios of the different nitrophenols are between -34 and -33‰, which is well within the range predicted by mass balance calculations. However, the observed carbon isotope ratios cover a range of nearly 9‰, and approximately 20% of the isotope ratios of the products have isotope ratios lower than predicted from the kinetic isotope effect of the first step of the reaction mechanism and the isotope ratio of the precursor. This can be explained by isotope fractionation during reaction steps following the initial reaction of the precursor VOCs with the OH radical. Limited evidence for local production of nitrophenols is observed since sampling was done in the Toronto area, an urban centre with significant anthropogenic emission sources. Strong evidence for significant local formation of nitrophenols is only found for samples collected in summer. On average, the difference in carbon isotope ratios between nitrophenols in the particle phase and in the gas phase is insignificant, but for a limited number of observations in

  6. Perceived barriers in accessing food among recent Latin American immigrants in Toronto

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Objective In Canada, recent immigrant households experience more food insecurity than the general population, but limited information is available about the personal, cultural, and social factors that contribute to this vulnerability. This study focused on recent Latin American (LA) immigrants to explore their perceived barriers in acquiring safe, nutritious, and culturally-appropriate food. Design A cross-sectional mixed-method design was applied to collect information from a convenience sample of 70 adult Spanish/Portuguese speakers who had arrived in Toronto within the last five years. Face-to-face interviews were conducted with primary household caregivers to obtain responses about barriers to acquiring food for their households; data were analyzed using a thematic analysis technique. Results Four main categories of barriers were identified: limited financial resources; language difficulty; cultural food preferences; and poor knowledge of available community-based food resources and services. Inadequate income was the main impediment in accessing adequate food, and was related to affordability of food items, accessibility of food outlets and transportation cost, and limited time for grocery shopping due to work conditions. Language barriers affected participants’ ability to obtain well-paid employment and their awareness about and access to available community-based food resources. Cultural barriers were related to food preferences and limited access to culturally-appropriate foods and resources. Conclusion The main barrier to food security among our sample of LA newcomers to Toronto is limited financial resources, highlighting the need for policies and strategies that could improve their financial power to purchase sufficient, nutritious, and culturally-acceptable food. Linguistic barriers and limited information among newcomers suggest the need to provide linguistically- and culturally-appropriate information related to community-based food programs and

  7. Highlights of the 2004 scientific sessions of the Heart Failure Society of America, Toronto, Canada, September 12 to 15, 2004.

    PubMed

    Liu, Peter; Konstam, Marvin A; Force, Thomas

    2005-02-15

    The annual scientific meeting of the Heart Failure Society of American (HFSA) brings together cardiologists, surgeons, nurses, and allied health care workers who are interested in improving the diagnosis, treatment, quality of life, and survival of patients affected by heart failure. The meeting integrates the best of basic advances with clinical trials and outcomes observations in a single seamless forum. The meeting in Toronto, Canada, attracted close to 3,000 attendees. PMID:15708712

  8. Promoting HIV Testing for Gay and Bisexual Men: An Evaluation of the 2011-2012 Campaign in Toronto and Ottawa.

    PubMed

    Adam, Barry D; Gardner, Sandra; Major, Carol; Campbell, Diana; Light, Lucia; Globerman, Jason

    2016-01-01

    This article reports on a social marketing campaign directed toward high-risk men who have sex with men in Toronto and Ottawa to encourage testing for HIV and syphilis; improve knowledge about HIV transmission, seroconversion symptoms, and the HIV window period; and heighten awareness of syphilis transmission and its relationship to facilitating HIV transmission. Evaluation data were collected from a large-scale online pre-and postcampaign survey of sexually active men who have sex with men and from laboratory testing data. Men who turned up to be tested also filled out an exit survey. The campaign websites attracted some 15,000 unique visitors, 54% of whom had an IP address in Toronto or Ottawa. Laboratory data showed a 20% increase in HIV testing in Toronto over the campaign compared to the previous year. The overall rate of HIV-positive tests remained relatively constant. Knowledge levels about seroconversion symptoms, sexually transmitted infection and HIV transmission, and the HIV window period were significantly better among postcampaign survey respondents aware of the campaign compared to postcampaign respondents who were not aware and compared to precampaign respondents. PMID:26384927

  9. Latent segmentation based count models: Analysis of bicycle safety in Montreal and Toronto.

    PubMed

    Yasmin, Shamsunnahar; Eluru, Naveen

    2016-10-01

    The study contributes to literature on bicycle safety by building on the traditional count regression models to investigate factors affecting bicycle crashes at the Traffic Analysis Zone (TAZ) level. TAZ is a traffic related geographic entity which is most frequently used as spatial unit for macroscopic crash risk analysis. In conventional count models, the impact of exogenous factors is restricted to be the same across the entire region. However, it is possible that the influence of exogenous factors might vary across different TAZs. To accommodate for the potential variation in the impact of exogenous factors we formulate latent segmentation based count models. Specifically, we formulate and estimate latent segmentation based Poisson (LP) and latent segmentation based Negative Binomial (LNB) models to study bicycle crash counts. In our latent segmentation approach, we allow for more than two segments and also consider a large set of variables in segmentation and segment specific models. The formulated models are estimated using bicycle-motor vehicle crash data from the Island of Montreal and City of Toronto for the years 2006 through 2010. The TAZ level variables considered in our analysis include accessibility measures, exposure measures, sociodemographic characteristics, socioeconomic characteristics, road network characteristics and built environment. A policy analysis is also conducted to illustrate the applicability of the proposed model for planning purposes. This macro-level research would assist decision makers, transportation officials and community planners to make informed decisions to proactively improve bicycle safety - a prerequisite to promoting a culture of active transportation. PMID:27442595

  10. Spatial clustering and the temporal mobility of walking school trips in the Greater Toronto Area, Canada.

    PubMed

    Mitra, Raktim; Buliung, Ron N; Faulkner, Guy E J

    2010-07-01

    Interest in utilitarian sources of physical activity, such as walking to school, has emerged in response to the increased prevalence of sedentary behavior in children and youth. Public health practitioners and urban planners need to be able to survey and monitor walking practices in space and time, with a view to developing appropriate interventions. This study explored the prevalence of walking to and from school of 11-13 year olds in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), Canada. The Getis-Ord (G(i)(*)) local spatial statistic, Markov transition matrices, and logistic regressions were used to examine the spatial clustering of walking trips in the study area, and to document any temporal drift of places in and out of walking clusters. Findings demonstrate that walking tends to cluster within the urban and inner-suburban GTA, and in areas with low household income. Temporally persistent cluster membership was less likely within inner-suburban and outer-suburban places. The evidence suggests that interventions to increase active school transportation need to acknowledge spatial and temporal differences in walking behavior. PMID:20207186