Medical science is an ever-evolving subject. Millions of dollars are poured into research each year to further our knowledge into human medicine and find new cures. Here is a list of the 10 most cited clinical studies of 2014.
1. Childhood obesity: public-health crisis, common sense cure
Historically, a fat child meant a healthy child who could survive the rigors of malnutrition and infections. Obese children develop serious medical and psychosocial complications, and are at a greatly increased risk of adult morbidity and mortality. Obesity in childhood causes a wide range of serious complications, and increases the risk of premature illness and death later in life, raising public-health concerns. During the past two decades, the prevalence of obesity in children has risen greatly worldwide. However, treatment for childhood obesity remains largely ineffective .
2. Global and regional mortality from 235 causes of death for 20 age groups in 1990 and 2010: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010
The rates and numbers of people who die, where, at what age, and from what disease, is a crucial input into policy debates, planning interventions, and prioritising research for new health technologies. Trends in causes of death provide an important geographical summary of whether society is or is not making progress in reducing the burden of premature mortality and where renewed efforts are needed. If a health information system is not providing timely and accurate information on causes of death by age and sex, major reforms are required to provide health planners with this essential health intelligence .
3. Mindfulness-based stress reduction and health benefits: A meta-analysis
Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) is a structured group program that employs mindfulness meditation to alleviate suffering associated with physical, psychosomatic and psychiatric disorders. The program, nonreligious and non-esoteric, is based upon a systematic procedure to develop enhanced awareness of moment-to-moment experience of perceptible mental processes. Results suggest that MBSR may help a broad range of individuals to cope with their clinical and nonclinical problems .
4. Disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) for 291 diseases and injuries in 21 regions, 1990–2010: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010
The study aimed to calculate the disease burden worldwide with meaningful methods to enable conclusive comparisons to help make decisions and formulate policies in the upcoming years .
5. Social determinants of health inequalities
The gross inequalities in health that we see within and between countries present a challenge to the world. Research identifies social factors at the root of much of these inequalities in health. Social determinants are relevant to communicable and non-communicable disease alike. Health status, therefore, should be of concern to policy makers in every sector, not solely those involved in health policy .
6. The empirical status of cognitive-behavioural therapy: A review of meta-analyses
This review summarizes the current meta-analysis literature on treatment outcomes of cognitive – behavioural therapy (CBT) for a wide range of psychiatric disorders. Large effect sizes were found for CBT for unipolar depression, generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder with or without agoraphobia, social phobia, post-traumatic stress disorder, and childhood depressive and anxiety disorders. Effect sizes for CBT of marital distress, anger, childhood somatic disorders, and chronic pain were in the moderate range. CBT was somewhat superior to antidepressants in the treatment of adult depression. CBT was equally effective as behaviour therapy in the treatment of adult depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder .
7. Eating disorders
Eating disorders are an important cause of physical and psychosocial morbidity in adolescent girls and young adult women. The cause of eating disorders is complex and badly understood. There is a genetic predisposition, and certain specific environmental risk factors that have been implemented .
8. Effects of physical exercise on anxiety, depression, and sensitivity to stress: A unifying theory
The pattern of evidence suggests the theory that exercise training recruits a process which confers enduring resilience to stress. Clinically, exercise training continues to offer clinical psychologists a vehicle for nonspecific therapeutic social and psychological processes .
9. Childhood obesity
The global prevalence of obesity has increased tremendously in the past 3 decades with a consequent increase in type 2 diabetes in children. The study aimed to understand and identify methods to prevent, control and reduce this epidemic. .
10. The effects of violent video game habits on adolescent hostility, aggressive behaviours, and school performance
Increasingly evidence is linking violent video games to aggressive behaviours in children, decreasing school performances and hostility in adolescents. The study examines habits of video games and confirms such associations while suggesting methods to overcome the hostility .
- Cara Ebbeling, Dorota Pawlak, David Ludwig. Childhood obesity. Public health crisis, common sense cure. The Lancet. Vol 360. August 10, 2002.
- Rafael Lozano, Mohsen Naghavi, Kyle Foreman, Stephen Lim, et al. Global and regional mortality from 235 causes of death for 20 age groups in 1990 and 2010: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010. The Lancet. Vol 380. No. 9853. P2095-2128.December 15. 2012.
- Paul Grossman, Ludger Niemann, Stefan Schmidt, Harald Walach. Mindfulness-based stress reduction and health benefits: A meta-analysis. Journal of psychosomatic research. Volume 57, issue 1, july 2004, pages 35–43.
- Christopher Murray, Theo Vos, Rafael Lozano et al. Disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) for 291 diseases and injuries in 21 regions, 1990–2010: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010. The Lancet. Volume 380, no. 9859, p 2197-2223. 15december 2012.
- Prof. Michael Marmot. Social determinants of health inequalities. The lancet. Volume 365, no. 9464, p1099-1104. 19 march 2005.
- Andrew Butler, Jason Chapman, Evan Forman, Aaron Beck. The empirical status of cognitive-behavioural therapy: A review of meta-analyses. Clinical psychology review. volume 26, issue 1, January 2006, pages 17–31
- Prof. Christopher Fairburn, Paul Harrison. Eating disorders. The Lancet. Volume 361, no. 9355, p 407-416. 1 February 2003.
- Peter salmon. Effects of physical exercise on anxiety, depression, and sensitivity to stress: A unifying theory. Clinical psychology review. Volume 21, issue 1, p 33-61. February 2001.
- Joan Han, Debbie Lawlor, Sue Kimm. Childhood obesity. The Lancet. Vol. 375. Issue 9727. P-1737-48. 15-21 May, 2010.
- Douglas Gentile, Paul Lynch, Jennifer Linder, David Walsh. The effects of violent video game habits on adolescent hostility, aggressive behaviors and school performance. Journal of adolescence. Vol.27, Issue 1. February 2004. P 5-22.