Coping patterns and psychosocial distress in female partners of prostate cancer patients

Jeremy W Couper, Sidney Bloch, Anthony Love, Gillian Duchesne, Michelle MacVean, David Kissane

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Background: With medical advances since the 1990s, a growing proportion of patients are living for many years with prostate cancer (PCA) and the consequences of its treatment. Objective: The authors investigated the experience of being diagnosed with cancer and the effects of its treatment on patients' partners. Method: The authors conducted an observational, longitudinal study of 103 couples facing the diagnosis of either localized (potentially curable) or metastatic (incurable) PCA at Time 1 and then 6 months later (Time 2). Results: At both Time 1 and Time 2, psychological distress, marital satisfaction, and family functioning were measured in patients and partners; coping was measured in partners only. Partner maladaptive coping patterns of avoidance and self-blame at Time 1 predicted greater partner psychological distress at Time 2, as did "wishful thinking" at Time 2. Discussion: Psychosocial interventions designed to promote adaptive coping in couples facing PCA warrant systematic study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)375-382
Number of pages8
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2009

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