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      Posttraumatic growth following breast cancer: A controlled comparison study.

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          Abstract

          Cancer may be viewed as a psychosocial transition with the potential for positive and negative outcomes. This cross-sectional study (a) compared breast cancer (BC) survivors' (n = 70) self-reports of depression, well-being, and posttraumatic growth with those of age- and education-matched healthy comparison women (n = 70) and (b) identified correlates of posttraumatic growth among BC survivors. Groups did not differ in depression or well-being, but the BC group showed a pattern of greater posttraumatic growth, particularly in relating to others, appreciation of life, and spiritual change. BC participants' posttraumatic growth was unrelated to distress or well-being but was positively associated with perceived life-threat, prior talking about breast cancer, income, and time since diagnosis. Research that has focused solely on detection of distress and its correlates may paint an incomplete and potentially misleading picture of adjustment to cancer.

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          Most cited references41

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          Optimism, coping, and health: Assessment and implications of generalized outcome expectancies.

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            Integrating response shift into health-related quality of life research: a theoretical model.

            Patients confronted with a life-threatening or chronic disease are faced with the necessity to accommodate to their illness. An important mediator of this adaptation process is 'response shift' which involves changing internal standards, values and the conceptualization of quality of life (QOL). Integrating response shift into QOL research would allow a better understanding of how QOL is affected by changes in health status and would direct the development of reliable and valid measures for assessing changes in QOL. A theoretical model is proposed to clarify and predict changes in QOL as a result of the interaction of: (a) a catalyst, referring to changes in the respondent's health status; (b) antecedents, pertaining to stable or dispositional characteristics of the individual (e.g. personality); (c) mechanisms, encompassing behavioral, cognitive, or affective processes to accommodate the changes in health status (e.g. initiating social comparisons, reordering goals); and (d) response shift, defined as changes in the meaning of one's self-evaluation of QOL resulting from changes in internal standards, values, or conceptualization. A dynamic feedback loop aimed at maintaining or improving the perception of QOL is also postulated. This model is illustrated and the underlying assumptions are discussed. Future research directions are outlined that may further the investigation of response shift, by testing specific hypotheses and predictions about the QOL domains and the clinical and psychosocial conditions that would potentiate or prevent response shift effects.
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              Lottery winners and accident victims: is happiness relative?

              Adaptation level theory suggests that both contrast and habituation will operate to prevent the winning of a fortune from elevating happiness as much as might be expected. Contrast with the peak experience of winning should lessen the impact of ordinary pleasures, while habituation should eventually reduce the value of new pleasures made possible by winning. Study 1 compared a sample of 22 major lottery winners with 22 controls and also with a group of 29 paralyzed accident victims who had been interviewed previously. As predicted, lottery winners were not happier than controls and took significantly less pleasure from a series of mundane events. Study 2 indicated that these effects were not due to preexisting differences between people who buy or do not buy lottery tickets or between interviews that made or did not make the lottery salient. Paraplegics also demonstrated a contrast effect, not by enhancing minor pleasures but by idealizing their past, which did not help their present happiness.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Health Psychology
                Health Psychology
                American Psychological Association (APA)
                1930-7810
                0278-6133
                2001
                2001
                : 20
                : 3
                : 176-185
                Article
                10.1037/0278-6133.20.3.176
                11403215
                ff205638-059f-4a62-adb0-5e499f903b5d
                © 2001
                History

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