Dr Julius Burkauskas

Julius Burkauskas is a clinical psychologist and psychotherapist (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, CBT). Trained in basic psychology at the University of Vilnius, Lithuania, he received his M.Sc in Clinical Psychology in 2011 at the University of Leiden, The Netherlands. He defended his doctoral thesis in January 2018 at the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, where he currently works as a research assistant. During his PhD years Julius benefited from quality training at the national and international level, including internships at Harvard (USA) and Hertfordshire (UK) universities.  His current research mainly focuses on examining effects of mental distress, fatigue, endocrine and inflammatory factors on cognitive functioning in patients with anxiety and mood disorders.


Is it time to prescribe to log off: What do we know about problematic use of the Internet?


Dr Julius Burkauskas

Clinical Psychologist and Psychotherapist

Julius Burkauskas is a clinical psychologist and psychotherapist (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, CBT). Trained in basic psychology at the University of Vilnius, Lithuania, he received his M.Sc in Clinical Psychology in 2011 at the University of Leiden, The Netherlands. He defended his doctoral thesis in January 2018 at the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, where he currently works as a research assistant. During his PhD years Julius benefited from quality training at the national and international level, including internships at Harvard (USA) and Hertfordshire (UK) universities.  His current research mainly focuses on examining effects of mental distress, fatigue, endocrine and inflammatory factors on cognitive functioning in patients with anxiety and mood disorders.

Aims: The term Problematic Usage (PUI) of the Internet covers a wide range of behaviours such as gambling, gaming, streaming, hoarding, pornography viewing and social networking. Gaming disorder is under consideration by the WHO ICD-11 as the first disorder of behavioural addiction characterised by PUI. However, better understanding of the psychopathology of all the different forms of PUI is required to determine their place in the psychiatric taxonomy. This presentation reviews some of the key research and its theoretical implications and introduces a newly established international research network.

Methods: Selective overview of key issues in PUI focusing on epidemiology, phenomenology, comorbidity, neuropsychological models, intervention and psychosocial cost and burden.

Results: There is a scarcity of reliable information. While many clinical aspects of PUI appear like addiction, some forms resemble impulse-control disorders, obsessive compulsive and related disorders (OCRDs) or social anxiety disorder. Meta-analysis demonstrates neurocognitive changes in the fields of behavioural inhibition and executive control, and brain imaging changes in the cortico-striatal neuro-circuitry known to be affected in behavioural addictions, impulse control disorders and OCRDs.

Conclusions: Action is needed to better understand the nature and magnitude of the different forms of PUI to inform health policy and service development. The EU Horizon 2020 (COST) Action (CA 16207)  acts to advance globally networked interdisciplinary research into PUI, to achieve consensus on definitions, assessment instruments, natural history and brain-based mechanisms, to guide development of new and effective interventions.

Co-Authors

Mpavaenda D 1,2; Shodunke A. 1,2; Cinosi E 1,2; Fineberg NA 1,2,3. 1 Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust, Rosanne House, Welwyn Garden City, AL8 6HG, 2 University of Hertfordshire, College Lane, Hatfield, AL10 9AB, 3 Cambridge University School of Clinical Medicine, Cambridge, CB2 0SP


Conflicts of interest:

Dr. Fineberg reports personal fees from Otsuka, Abbott, Lundbeck, Taylor and Francis, Oxford University Press, grants and non-financial support from ECNP, Shire, personal fees and non-financial support from College of Mental Health Pharmacists, non-financial support from RANZCP, Sun, RCPsych, CINP, Int Society of Behavioural Addiction, WHO, International College of Obsessive Compulsive Spectrum Disorders, BAP, Janssen, Int Forum of Mood and Anxiety Disorders, Wiley, grants from MRC, Wellcome, other from MHRA, outside the submitted work; and non-financial support from the EU COST Action. Dr. Burkauskas has served as a scientific consultant to CogState, Ltd.

 

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