It is unsurprising that COVID-19 still dominates our top 10 list. In February, we saw a large number of new articles enter our top 10 most read list; three of which have been highlighted below.
Associations between adverse childhood experiences, attitudes towards COVID-19 restrictions and vaccine hesitancy
Bellis et al. conducted a cross-sectional telephone survey in Wales to explore associations between adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and trust in health information on COVID-19, attitudes towards and compliance with COVID-19 restrictions, and vaccine hesitancy. They found that increasing ACE counts were independently related to low trust in NHS COVID-19 information, feeling unfairly restricted by the government and ending mandatory face coverings. Furthermore, they found that vaccine hesitancy was threefold higher with 4+ ACEs (versus 0 ACEs) and higher in younger age groups. However, the authors acknowledge that ACEs were self-reported and measured retrospectively; therefore, these may have been misremembered or misreported.
Consumption and effects of caffeinated energy drinks in young people
In their overview of systematic reviews and secondary analysis of UK data, Khouja et al. looked at children’s consumption of caffeinated energy drinks and their effects on health and behaviour. They found weak evidence to suggest that up to a third of children in the UK consume caffeinated energy drinks weekly, while drinking caffeinated energy drinks five or more days per week was associated with some health and behaviour problems. However, most of the evidence came from surveys, so the authors were unable to distinguish cause from effect. Furthermore, they were unable to combine the survey data due to differences between survey design and the measures reported.
The lived experience of ‘brain fog’ after COVID-19
Callan et al. conducted a qualitative study to explore the lived experience of ‘brain fog’ in people with long COVID-19 in the UK. They held five focus groups via Zoom in October and November 2020, finding that participants had mixed views on the appropriateness of the term ‘brain fog’, and that subjective impairments in executive function, attention, memory and language were common. They also found that participants’ experience of illness was greatly compounded by the challenges in navigating the healthcare system when subjectively cognitively impaired. While the authors oversampled from men and non-white ethnic groups to correct skew, they acknowledge that they may not have fully captured the perspectives of some minority ethnic groups, occupational classes or those less digitally connected.
Below is the full list of papers that were the most read in BMJ Open during February 2022. Other new entries can be found at numbers one, three, five and ten.
Like what you see? Follow this link for all our most recent content.