Special Issue "Feature Papers in Clinical Psychology"

A special issue of Journal of Clinical Medicine (ISSN 2077-0383). This special issue belongs to the section "Clinical Psychology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 August 2021.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Michele Roccella
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Child Neuropsychiatry, Department of Psychological Sciences, Pedagogical and Education, University of Palermo, 90128 Palermo, Italy
Interests: neurodevelopmental disorders; encephalopathies; epilepsies; neuromuscular diseases; sleep disorders; rare genetic syndromes; neuropsychological disorders
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Dr. Francesca Felicia Operto
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Child and Adolescent Neuropsychiatry Unit, Department of Medicine, Surgery and Dentistry, University of Salerno, 84084 Fisciano SA, Italy
Interests: pediatric epilepsy; neurodevelopmental disorders; autism; ketogenic diet
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Lucia Parisi
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Child Neuropsychiatry, Department of Psychological Sciences, Pedagogical and Education, University of Palermo, Italy
Interests: psychiatric disorders in children and adolescents; autism; behavioral disorders; pediatric neurologic disorders

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

On behalf of the Journal of Clinical Medicine editorial team, we are delighted to announce the launch of a new Special Issue on the subject of “Feature Papers in Clinical Psychology”, guest-edited by Prof. Dr. Michele Roccella from the University of Palermo, Italy and by Prof. Dr. Lucia Parisi from the University of Palermo.
Clinical psychology is one of the main theoretical–applicative branches of psychology. It includes the scientific study and the applications of psychology with regard to understanding, prevention, and intervention in individual, family, and group psychological and relational problems, including the management of many forms of psychopathology.
Central aspects of his practice are psychodiagnostics and psychotherapeutic intervention, which represents a specialized development aimed above all at taking charge of situations where there is a structured psychopathology.
Among the thematic nuclei of operational interest and clinical research, some can be exemplified as the prevention (primary and secondary) of personal discomfort; early identification and diagnosis of psychopathological risks; the cognitive, affective–emotional, psychosocial, behavioral, personality, social, and cultural factors that are at the origin of the disturbances or maintain the condition of discomfort; emotions and their regulation in relation to health and disease, with specific regard to affective dysregulations; the methods of clinical management of different types of individual, couple, family, and group disorders; the various forms of individual, couple, family, and group psychological counseling; the improvement of the effectiveness of psychodiagnostic techniques; the methods of managing emotional, relational or decision-making situations that arise in various life stages and contexts; the promotion of individual psychosocial wellbeing and in social contexts; the design of effective forms of psychological and psychosocial rehabilitation; and the assessment of the effectiveness of aid interventions and health prevention and promotion programs in different social contexts.
Modern clinical psychology is based on the evidence of scientific research and clinical experience and takes an interdisciplinary approach, also making use of the cognitive contributions of other psychological disciplines (in particular, cognitive psychology, psychology and dynamics, psychology of personality and differential psychology, psychology, neuropsychology clinical, social and group psychology, psychometrics) and nonpsychological, such as epidemiology, physiology, evaluative research, health sociology, etc.
This Special Issue will gather experiences from clinical psychologists, psychiatrists, and pediatricians from different areas and countries to acquire new perspectives in the vision and therapy of disorders that clinical psychology and developmental psychopathology deal with.
We are happy to invite you to submit articles that report on the subject. Reviews or original articles focusing on the aspects treated by clinical psychology. Approaches from basic research to these disorders will also be prioritized, given their intrinsic innovative character, as well as proposals for new therapeutic indications.
This Special Issue is open for submissions until 31 August 2021. All submitted articles will undergo a rigorous peer-review process and, on acceptance for publication, are ensured rapid publication online and high visibility.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Michele Roccella
Dr. Francesca Felicia Operto
Prof. Dr. Lucia Parisi
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Journal of Clinical Medicine is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • food disorders
  • attachment
  • anxiety
  • self-esteem
  • depression
  • personality
  • sleep
  • emotions
  • mental disorders

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

Article
Development and Validation of the Test of Orthorexia Nervosa (TON-17)
J. Clin. Med. 2021, 10(8), 1637; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/jcm10081637 - 12 Apr 2021
Viewed by 486
Abstract
This study aims to develop and validate a new self-report questionnaire to measure orthorexia nervosa (ON). Based on a current review of the scientific literature and interviews with people at risk of orthorexia, 40 items were selected to test orthorexia nervosa (TON-40). A [...] Read more.
This study aims to develop and validate a new self-report questionnaire to measure orthorexia nervosa (ON). Based on a current review of the scientific literature and interviews with people at risk of orthorexia, 40 items were selected to test orthorexia nervosa (TON-40). A total sample of 767 individuals (M = 26.49, SD = 9.66, 56.98% women) participated in the study. The exploratory factor analysis (EFA), confirmatory factor analysis (CFA), and composite construct analysis (CCA) were performed to find an appropriate model of sufficient reliability and validity and stable construction. Convergent validation was performed regarding the correlation of the TON-17 with another measure of ON (ORTO-15), eating disorders (the EAT-26 and DEAS), healthy behavior (the HBI), quality of life (the Brief WHOQOL), physical health (the GRSH), anxiety (the GAD-7), depression (the PHQ-9), and obsessive-compulsive disorder (the OCI-R). Gender, Body Mass Index (BMI), and the medical reasons for a restrictive diet were also examined. As a result of the structural analyses, the number of items was reduced from 40 to 17. The best fit indices of the TON-17 were found for the hierarchical bi-factor model, with three lower-order factors (Control of food quality, Fixation of health and healthy diet, and Disorder symptoms) and one general higher-order factor (Orthorexia). According to the 95th percentile method of estimation, the prevalence of ON was 5.5% for the TON-17 total score. The TON-17 scale and subscales showed good psychometric properties, stability, reliability, and construct validity. The TON-17 indicated a positive relationship with the ORTO-15, EAT-26, DEAS, HBI, OCI-R, GAD-7, and PHQ-9. TON-17 can be considered as a useful tool for assessing the risk of ON. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers in Clinical Psychology)
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Article
Maternal Resources, Pregnancy Concerns, and Biological Factors Associated to Birth Weight and Psychological Health
J. Clin. Med. 2021, 10(4), 695; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/jcm10040695 - 10 Feb 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 584
Abstract
Cognitive maternal adaptation during pregnancy may influence biological variables, maternal psychological, and neonatal health. We hypothesized that pregnant women with numerous general resources and less negative emotions would have a better coping with a positive influence on neonatal birth weight and maternal psychological [...] Read more.
Cognitive maternal adaptation during pregnancy may influence biological variables, maternal psychological, and neonatal health. We hypothesized that pregnant women with numerous general resources and less negative emotions would have a better coping with a positive influence on neonatal birth weight and maternal psychological health. The study included 131 healthy pregnant women. A blood sample was obtained in the first trimester to assess biological variables (polyphenols, hematological and biochemical parameters). Psychological variables (negative affect, anxiety, optimism, resilience, family–work conflicts, pregnancy concerns, general resources, and life satisfaction) were evaluated at several time points along gestation, and birth weight was recorded. Hierarchical linear regression models were used to associate the above parameters with maternal psychological outcome at the end of gestation (depression, resilience, and optimism) and neonatal outcome (birth weight). Maternal depression was associated with leukocytes (β = 0.08 ± 0.03, p-value = 0.003), cholesterol (β = 0.01 ± 0.002, p-value = 0.026), and pregnancy concerns (β = 0.31 ± 0.09, p-value = 0.001). Maternal resilience was associated with leukocytes (β = −0.14 ± 0.09, p-value = 0.010) and life satisfaction (β = 0.82 ± 0.08, p-value = 0.001), and maternal optimism was associated with polyphenol levels (β = 0.002 ± 0.001, p-value = 0.018) and life satisfaction (β = 0.49 ± 0.04, p-value = 0.001). Birth weight was associated with maternal resilience (β = 370.2 ± 97.0, p-value = 0.001), red blood cells (β = 480.3 ± 144.4, p-value = 0.001), and life satisfaction (β = 423.3 ± 32.6, p-value = 0.001). We found associations between maternal psychological, blood variables, and birth weight and maternal depression. This study reveals the relevance of psychological health during pregnancy for maternal and neonatal outcome, and it emphasizes the need to consider it in preventive policies in the obstetric field. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers in Clinical Psychology)
Article
Risk of Contracting COVID-19, Personal Resources and Subjective Well-Being among Healthcare Workers: The Mediating Role of Stress and Meaning-Making
J. Clin. Med. 2021, 10(1), 132; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/jcm10010132 - 02 Jan 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 991
Abstract
The latest research suggests that the relationships between the risk of contracting COVID-19, personal resources and subjective well-being have rather an indirect character and can include the occurrence of mediating factors related to meaning-making processes and stress experiences. Protection motivation theory offers a [...] Read more.
The latest research suggests that the relationships between the risk of contracting COVID-19, personal resources and subjective well-being have rather an indirect character and can include the occurrence of mediating factors related to meaning-making processes and stress experiences. Protection motivation theory offers a theoretical paradigm that enables these associations to be thoroughly investigated and understood. The current study aimed to examine the mediating roles of meaning-making and stress in the relationship of risk of contracting COVID-19 and personal resources (self-efficacy and meaning in life) with subjective well-being among healthcare workers. A total of 225 healthcare workers from hospitals, medical centres and diagnostic units completed a set of questionnaires during the first few months of the COVID-19 lockdown period (March–May 2020). The results revealed that greater self-efficacy and meaning in life were associated with higher cognitive and affective dimensions of subjective well-being, whereas a lesser risk of contracting COVID-19 was only associated with the higher affective dimension. The central finding demonstrated different mediating roles of stress and meaning-making in the relationship of risk of contracting COVID-19 and personal resources with the cognitive and affective dimensions of subjective well-being. This confirmed the applicability of meaning-oriented and stress management processes for understanding how healthcare workers’ well-being is affected during the COVID-19 pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers in Clinical Psychology)
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Article
Self- and Parent-Reported Psychological Symptoms in Young Cancer Survivors and Control Peers: Results from a Clinical Center
J. Clin. Med. 2020, 9(11), 3444; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/jcm9113444 - 27 Oct 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 475
Abstract
Pediatric cancer survivors are at increased risk for psychological distress. We sought to understand the severity and symptoms’ co-occurrence among pediatric survivors compared to controls by rating both self- and parent-reported symptomatology. Forty survivors (22 males; mean age at study time: 12.9 years) [...] Read more.
Pediatric cancer survivors are at increased risk for psychological distress. We sought to understand the severity and symptoms’ co-occurrence among pediatric survivors compared to controls by rating both self- and parent-reported symptomatology. Forty survivors (22 males; mean age at study time: 12.9 years) participated in the study. Most survivors (85%) had a diagnosis of acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Seventy-nine healthy controls with the same age and gender distribution as the patients were included. A standardized assessment of psychological functioning was conducted by self- and parent-reported symptoms evaluations. The self-reported anxious symptom severity was significantly higher in survivors. A significantly higher proportion of survivors compared to controls had clinically significant anxiety, depression, and combined anxiety symptoms (i.e., social anxiety, separation anxiety, or physical symptoms). In both study groups, the self-reported emotional and somatic symptoms were significantly associated. The multi-informant assessments of the psychological symptoms revealed distinct associations between the child- and parent-reported symptoms in the survivors’ group: the survivors’ self-reports of depressive symptoms, somatic symptoms, and functional impairment were significantly correlated with the parent reports of child behavioral concerns, somatic complaints, and functional impairment, respectively. Conclusion: Self-reported symptoms showed similar comorbidity profiles in survivors and control peers. The multi-informant assessments detected differences in the association of self- and parent-reported symptoms between the survivor and control groups. The present study showed that multi-informant assessment is critical to understanding symptom profiles and to informing intervention with particular regard to parental participation and support. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers in Clinical Psychology)
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Article
Motor and Cognitive Performance in Patients with Liver Cirrhosis with Minimal Hepatic Encephalopathy
J. Clin. Med. 2020, 9(7), 2154; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/jcm9072154 - 08 Jul 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 733
Abstract
Minimal hepatic encephalopathy (MHE) is associated with mild cognitive impairment and frailty. This study aims to identify cognitive and motor differences in cirrhotic patients with and without MHE, and the correlations between motor signs and cognitive performance. Gait, balance, hand strength and motor [...] Read more.
Minimal hepatic encephalopathy (MHE) is associated with mild cognitive impairment and frailty. This study aims to identify cognitive and motor differences in cirrhotic patients with and without MHE, and the correlations between motor signs and cognitive performance. Gait, balance, hand strength and motor speed performance were evaluated in 66 cirrhotic patients (38 without and 28 with MHE, according to the Psychometric Hepatic Encephalopathy Score (PHES). Cognitive performance was measured with the Mini-Mental State Examination, Verbal Fluency Test, Aprendizaje Verbal España-Complutense Test (TAVEC), Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale III, Hamilton Depression and Anxiety Rating Scale and Functioning Assessment Short Test (FAST). MHE patients performed worse than patients without MHE in cognitive and autonomous functioning, learning and long-term memory, and verbal fluency. The same pattern was found in gait, center of pressure movement, variability of hand strength performance and hand motor speed. In MHE patients, high correlations were found between balance and FAST test, gait velocity and verbal skills, hand strength variability and anxiety and depression, and motor speed and FAST and TAVEC. MHE patients showed worse motor and cognitive performance than patients without MHE. MHE patients could have impaired movement control expressed as bradykinesia, and this reduced motor performance could correlate with cognitive performance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers in Clinical Psychology)
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