Mood in Chronic Disease: Questioning the Answers
The main research questions concerning mood and chronic disease are about the extent, sources, and consequences of emotional distress. Answers to these questions are informative both to psychological theory and to the design of interventions aimed at improving outcomes for patients. Coping models would propose that the effects should be moderated by individual coping responses. More models of the mental representations of illness would suggest that the effects would be moderated by the individual’s beliefs about the condition, especially beliefs in the identity of the condition, its expected pattern over time, its causes, its consequences, and means of management or control. Cross-sectional studies can be useful in assessing levels of distress and in comparing patients with different diseases. In cross-sectional studies, one may be choosing between test administration in different places, especially between home and the health service premises.