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A Systematic Review of Illness Perceptions and Coping among Cancer Patients in India


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1 Department of Psychology, University of Allahabad, Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh, India
     

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The present paper reviewed studies on cancer patients in India, with the aim of identifying a) the nature and content of illness representations among Indian cancer patients and b) Coping approaches in the same population c) the role of distress in the relationship of illness representation and coping. 14 papers were included in the present review. The inclusion criteria were, studies must examine illness perceptions, stress/distress and coping among adult cancer patients and it should be empirical based on sample from India. Studies dealing with drugs or biological measures, reviews, meta-analysis, cancer in children and adolescents, and primary care giver were excluded from this review. Except time line, all dimensions of illness cognitions were dealt with. Identity of the illness overlapped with its causality. Most of the patients were found to be unaware of their diagnosis as well as prognosis. Avoidance and denial coping was prominent among Indian cancer patients. Role of distress could not be determined on the basis of the present group of researches, yet it can be suggested that, distress acts as a moderator between illness cognitions and coping because perception of distress will determine the coping strategies to be selected. Number of studies in the area under review is very less in India. The genesis of the CSM lies in the fact that patient should be aware of diagnosis, i.e. the identity. How will the stages interpretation, coping and appraisal of CSM commence unless and until there is any label attached to the disease?.

Keywords

Illness Cognition, Distress, Cancer, Coping, Common Sense Model.
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  • A Systematic Review of Illness Perceptions and Coping among Cancer Patients in India

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Authors

Amreen Ahmad Ali
Department of Psychology, University of Allahabad, Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh, India
Neena Kohli
Department of Psychology, University of Allahabad, Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh, India
Shreshtha Yadav
Department of Psychology, University of Allahabad, Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh, India

Abstract


The present paper reviewed studies on cancer patients in India, with the aim of identifying a) the nature and content of illness representations among Indian cancer patients and b) Coping approaches in the same population c) the role of distress in the relationship of illness representation and coping. 14 papers were included in the present review. The inclusion criteria were, studies must examine illness perceptions, stress/distress and coping among adult cancer patients and it should be empirical based on sample from India. Studies dealing with drugs or biological measures, reviews, meta-analysis, cancer in children and adolescents, and primary care giver were excluded from this review. Except time line, all dimensions of illness cognitions were dealt with. Identity of the illness overlapped with its causality. Most of the patients were found to be unaware of their diagnosis as well as prognosis. Avoidance and denial coping was prominent among Indian cancer patients. Role of distress could not be determined on the basis of the present group of researches, yet it can be suggested that, distress acts as a moderator between illness cognitions and coping because perception of distress will determine the coping strategies to be selected. Number of studies in the area under review is very less in India. The genesis of the CSM lies in the fact that patient should be aware of diagnosis, i.e. the identity. How will the stages interpretation, coping and appraisal of CSM commence unless and until there is any label attached to the disease?.

Keywords


Illness Cognition, Distress, Cancer, Coping, Common Sense Model.