Coping and Anxiety in Women Recalled for Additional Diagnostic Procedures Following an Abnormal Screening Mammogram

Bernadette Davantes Heckman, Edwin B. Fisher, Barbara Monsees, Michael Merbaum, Stephen Ristvedt, Connie Bishop

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study characterized women's concurrent and subsequent levels of emotional distress associated with a questionable mammogram screening and relationships between women's coping and psychosocial adjustment. State anxiety was assessed in 98 women 1 day after receiving a mammogram screening (Time 1), after notification of a questionable screening result that necessitated additional testing (Time 2), and after being informed of their breast-cancer-free status (Time 3). Key findings include (a) women reported a significant increase in anxiety following notification of the need to return for follow-up testing; (b) significant and positive associations were found between anxiety and behavioral approach, behavioral avoidance, cognitive approach, and cognitive avoidance coping in cross-sectional analyses; and (c) cognitive avoidance coping was a strong predictor of final levels of state anxiety in women. Findings suggest that cognitive avoidance coping plays an important role in reducing anxiety in women recalled to clarify an initially ambiguous screening procedure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)42-48
Number of pages7
JournalHealth Psychology
Volume23
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2004

Keywords

  • Breast cancer
  • Coping
  • Mammogram screening

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