Computer Program Has The Ability To Gauge Mental Illness Risk

A new study reports that computer programs are able to use brain scans to distinguish between healthy individuals and those at risk of developing anxiety and depression. Furthermore, the research suggests that software may someday be able to predict exactly which at-risk adolescents will develop one of those diseases.

The research program is focused on early detection of psychiatric maladies because most such disorders first begin to manifest during adolescence, and it is then that treatments may be most effective at stopping or preventing them. Currently, although a computer may be able to tell that a person with certain risk factors has a 15 percent chance of developing major depression, it cannot tell exactly which patient will finally manifest the disease. This largely stems from the lack of a single biomarker for each disease.

To judge the computer's ability to gauge mental illness risk, the computer analyzed 32 healthy adolescents—16 who had one bipolar parent, and 16 who had parents without mental illnesses. Each participant was required to label a series of faces as being either happy, neutral, or scared while being monitored by a functional magnetic resonance imaging device.

Using the MRI results, the computer was task with sorting the participants into groups of "healthy" versus "at-risk" individuals. The computer was correct in its estimation of each person's individual risk approximately three-fourths of the time. The highest rate of success was achieved using the scans taken when looking at neutral faces, confirming earlier research which suggested that people with mood disorders tend to be ambivalent or fearful toward neutral faces.

Source: PLoS One
Photo: Pexels

Anxiety Support Groups

Latest Post by JustJules Wed, 10/16/2019 - 1:01pm
Comments: 0
Latest Post by MillieM Wed, 10/16/2019 - 11:13am
Comments: 0
Latest Post by MillieM Wed, 10/16/2019 - 11:17am
Comments: 3
Latest Post by MillieM Wed, 10/16/2019 - 11:31am
Comments: 2

More Articles

Risperidone is the generic name of an atypical antipsychotic that is sometimes prescribed off-label to treat anxiety and anxiety disorders. It is...

Have you ever heard the expression, “A cup of probiotic yogurt a day helps keep anxiety at bay”?

Not likely since it was just made up, but...

When you struggle to fall asleep night after night due to severe anxiety, you may find your symptoms getting worse; lack of sleep is one of the...

Meditation has a reputation among some in the west as being akin to religious practice and for that reason, something mystical or reserved for...

Feelings of anxiety and stress cause a number of physical and chemical changes in the body, including the release of adrenaline and other hormones...

More Articles

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a condition that develops following a horrible or terrifying event. Reliving the trauma with nightmares...

What is stress?

Stress is sometimes used to describe challenges or threats, like, “Kelly was under a lot of stress”, or other times to...

The fourth version of the diagnostic manual for mental disorders, or DSM-IV, has now been replaced by a fifth revision, called the DSM-5.

...

Norpramin is a brand name for the pharmaceutical desipramine, a tricyclic antidepressant which operates by inhibiting the reuptake of...

Making choices can be anxiety provoking, especially if our ideas about the decision are riddled with judgments.

Getting rid of self-...

Making deep emotional connections with family and friends reduces stress, creates happiness, and can actually keep you healthier. In other words,...

Alzheimer's Disease is a degenerative disease of the brain that eventually leads to dementia and death. At the current time, there is no cure for...

According to an online poll conducted by the Anxiety Disorders Association of America, over half of women reported increased anxiety or depression...

Anxiety sufferers in the 21st century have a relatively new avenue of help and support: the Internet. As more and more people turn to Google first...

Whether being on Facebook makes you anxious depends on your temperament, age, how much time you spend there, and your purpose for being on the...

Lexapro is an SSRI antidepressant that is FDA approved for the treatment of generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). It is one of the antidepressants...

When we purchase health insurance as a safety net for if we become ill or injured, we're usually thinking of physical ailments. But mental illness...

We know it is necessary to breathe but do not always appreciate how important it is to breathe well.

In all types of meditation, energy...

One problem that anxiety can cause is head pressure. It is not a symptom discussed as often as some others, maybe because not everyone who...

Postpartum depression and anxiety are real, debilitating disorders that affect some women after they give birth.

Brought on by hormone...