Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland Coláiste Ríoga na Máinleá in Éirinn

RCSI MiniMed public lectures to explore physical effects of mental illness and how to maintain healthy gums

27 November 2013

The 2013/2014 RCSI (Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland) MiniMed Open Lecture Series continues tonight, Wednesday 27th November. Two lectures will be given on the subjects of the physical effects of mental illness and maintaining healthy gums. These lectures are free of charge to the public and will be held in RCSI, 123 St. Stephen's Green, from 7-9pm.

Professor Jogin Thakore, a senior lecturer in RCSI's Department of Psychiatry will deliver the lecture called ‘The physical effects of mental illness'. During this lecture, Prof Thakore will detail the multitude of physical effects and particular risk factors that impact mentally ill patients and contribute to a lower life expectancy as well as what exactly medical professionals can do to reduce death rates of this group.

Speaking ahead of the lecture, Prof Thakore said, ‘On average patients with schizophrenia live up to 25 years less than expected while those with manic depressive illness or bipolar disorder live on average 12-13 years less than expected rates. Leaving aside suicide, the most common causes of death in patients with mental illnesses are natural ones such as, cardiovascular disease. Such patients also have a large number of risk factors that lead to heart disease. For example, they smoke, can eat poorly, exercise little and have higher rates of developing type 2 diabetes. They also have additional risk factors namely the illness itself and the medications they take.'

The opening topic of the evening will be a lecture entitled ‘Periodontal (gum) disease and general health'. This talk will be given by a past Dean of RCSI's Faculty of Dentistry, Dr PJ Byrne. In the lecture, Dr Byrne will explain how periodontitis impacts on oral health as well as specifying the risk factors of the disease. He will also explain the crucial role dental professionals play in controlling such risk factors and promoting a healthy lifestyle. Dr Byrne said, ‘Periodontitis is a bacterially induced inflammatory disease which destroys connective tissue and bone that support the teeth. This condition, which gets more common with age, has been linked to coronary heart disease and shares a number of risk factors with cardiovascular disease. These include age, gender, socio-economic status and smoking. In this lecture I will stress the importance of how maintaining good oral health is an integral part of achieving a more holistic healthy lifestyle.'

The RCSI MiniMed Open Lecture Series is free of charge; however registration is essential in order to guarantee a place. Previous lecture series have attracted widespread public interest with demand for places far outstripping availability. Register online at and you can join the conversation online, on the night, on Twitter at #RCSIMiniMed. To view previous RCSI MiniMed lectures from the last series on the RCSI YouTube channel at