Illness representations in young people with chronic fatigue syndrome

Gray, Suzanne Elizabeth and Rutter, Derek R. (2007) Illness representations in young people with chronic fatigue syndrome. Psychology & Health, 22 (2). pp. 159-174. ISSN 0887-0446. (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

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Leventhal's commonsense model of self-regulation has attracted a great deal of research in recent years, but its possible implications for understanding young people with chronic illness have received little attention. The purpose of this study is to examine children and young people with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) and to explore (a) the characteristics of their illness representations, (b) whether those representations are associated with their physical functioning and perceived quality of life and (c) whether coping strategies may act as mediators between representations and those outcomes. A total of 85 participants, ranging in age from 8 to 25 years, were recruited from the website of a self-help group for young people with CFS. They were asked to complete three questionnaires, measuring illness representations, coping strategies, and physical functioning and quality of life. The results showed that illness representations formed characteristic patterns, that they were associated with both physical functioning and quality of life, and that coping partially mediated the relationship between illness representations and outcome. We conclude that young people's representations of their CFS play an important role in coping and outcome. The implications of the findings are discussed for both theory and clinical practice, and suggestions are made for further research

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled keywords: illness representations; young people; chronic fatigue syndrome
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Psychology
Depositing User: Maureen Cook
Date Deposited: 19 Dec 2007 19:31
Last Modified: 07 May 2014 13:28
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