Post-traumatic Growth in Inflammatory Bowel Disease Patients: The Role of Illness Cognitions and Physical Quality of Life

Yaira Hamama-Raz, Shlomit Nativ, Liat Hamama

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background and Aims: The symptoms and complications associated with inflammatory bowel disease [IBD] have been found to be associated significantly with impaired health-related quality of life. Nevertheless, there may also be a positive psychological change such as post-traumatic growth, as was noted among patients with other chronic diseases, but this remains understudied in patients with IBD. In this study, we explored associations between post-traumatic growth and illness cognitions (helplessness, acceptance and perceived benefits). In addition, we evaluated whether physical quality of life in IBD patients mediates the link between illness cognitions and post-traumatic growth. Methods: The study employed a cross-sectional design. Two hundred patients diagnosed with IBD completed questionnaires assessing illness cognitions, physical quality of life and post-traumatic growth. Results: There was a negative association between illness cognition of helplessness and post-traumatic growth, and positive associations between illness cognitions of acceptance and illness cognitions of perceived benefits, and post-traumatic growth. In addition, the association between an illness cognition of helplessness and post-traumatic growth was mediated via physical quality of life. Yet, the signs of the direct and the indirect paths of an illness cognition of helplessness on post-traumatic growth were opposite. Conclusions: This study extends the literature on the role of illness cognitions as an important component in facilitating the process of post-traumatic growth among IBD patients. Based on the findings, the management of IBD patients should incorporate more interventions aimed at exploring cognitive aspects of the illness in order to improve physical quality of life and enhance personal growth.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1060-1067
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Crohn's and Colitis
Volume15
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2021

Keywords

  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • illness cognitions
  • physical quality of life
  • post-traumatic growth

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