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Social-cognitive correlates of adjustment to prostate cancer.

journal contribution
posted on 01.03.2006, 00:00 by Katherine J. Roberts, Stephen J Lepore, Vicki HelgesonVicki Helgeson

This study examined whether social support might enhance health-related quality of life in men (n=89) treated for localized prostate cancer by improving their ability to cognitively process their cancer experience. Data were collected using two, structured in-person interviews and abstracting medical records. The baseline interview was within several months (T1) after treatment for cancer, and follow-up was 3 months later (T2). Most men (61.8%) were treated by radical prostatectomy. Results showed that T1 social support was positively related to T2 mental functioning, and this relation appeared to be mediated by T1 indicators of cognitively processing, intrusive thoughts and searching for meaning. These findings suggest that supportive social relations may improve mental functioning by helping men cognitively process their prostate cancer experience.