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Journal Article

Negative and positive illness representations of rheumatoid arthritis: a latent profile analysis


Publication date

Jun 2014


This study extends previous work to consider whether individuals with
rheumatoid arthritis (RA) can be categorised into groups with similar
illness representations. Data from 227 RA patients attending outpatient
clinics were collected prospectively at two time points, 6 months apart.
The optimal number of illness representation groups at the baseline
assessment was identified using latent profile analysis. Two groups of
individuals sharing similar illness perception profiles were identified.
The smaller group (43 %), characterised by a negative representation of
their illness, attributed more symptoms to their condition and reported
stronger perceptions of the consequences, chronicity and cyclicality of
their condition, and lower control compared to the positive
representation group (57 %). Cross-sectionally, membership of the
negative representation group was associated with higher levels of pain
and functional disability and, longitudinally, with increases in levels
of pain, functional disability and distress. These data highlight the
central role of illness perceptions in RA and suggest that individuals
with RA can be categorised into groups with similar illness

Published in

Journal of Behavioral Medicine

Volume and page numbers

37 , 524 -532





Psychology and Health



Online in Albert Sloman Library, except current 12 months; Albert Sloman Library Periodicals *restricted to Univ. Essex registered users*


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