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The Significance of Optimism in the Mastectomy Experience


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1 Consultant Clinical Psychologist, VIMHANS, New Delhi, India
     

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The study examines the differences between optimistic and pessimistic mastectomy patients in their experience of benefit-finding, positive affect, negative affect and spirituality during the breast cancer and mastectomy experience. A sample of 36 female mastectomy patients ranging in age from 40 60 years participated in the study. The participant's level of optimism and pessimism was assessed using the Life Orientation Scale Revised (Scheier, Carver&Bridges, 1994), the Benefit Finding scale (Tomich&Helgeson, 2004) measured the level of benefit-finding, PANAS (Watson, Clark&Tellegen, 1988) assessed the participant's level of positive affect and negative affect and spirituality respectively while The Daily Spiritual Experiences Scale (Underwood, Lynn&Teresi, 2002) assessed spirituality. The results indicated that optimistic participants reported higher amount of benefit-finding, experienced more of positive affect and less of negative affect and reported of higher levels of spirituality in the mastectomy experience as compared to pessimistic participants who reported more of negative affect and lower amount of benefit-finding, positive affect and spirituality. On the basis of the findings of the study, it is suggested that psychological treatment in terms of cognitive behavior therapy should be included as part of the breast cancer treatment program to enhance optimistic thinking pattern thereby enhancing other positive outcomes of benefit-finding, and positive affect.

Keywords

Optimism, Benfit-findingg, Positive Affect, Negative Affect, Spirituality
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  • The Significance of Optimism in the Mastectomy Experience

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Authors

Vandana Kapur
Consultant Clinical Psychologist, VIMHANS, New Delhi, India

Abstract


The study examines the differences between optimistic and pessimistic mastectomy patients in their experience of benefit-finding, positive affect, negative affect and spirituality during the breast cancer and mastectomy experience. A sample of 36 female mastectomy patients ranging in age from 40 60 years participated in the study. The participant's level of optimism and pessimism was assessed using the Life Orientation Scale Revised (Scheier, Carver&Bridges, 1994), the Benefit Finding scale (Tomich&Helgeson, 2004) measured the level of benefit-finding, PANAS (Watson, Clark&Tellegen, 1988) assessed the participant's level of positive affect and negative affect and spirituality respectively while The Daily Spiritual Experiences Scale (Underwood, Lynn&Teresi, 2002) assessed spirituality. The results indicated that optimistic participants reported higher amount of benefit-finding, experienced more of positive affect and less of negative affect and reported of higher levels of spirituality in the mastectomy experience as compared to pessimistic participants who reported more of negative affect and lower amount of benefit-finding, positive affect and spirituality. On the basis of the findings of the study, it is suggested that psychological treatment in terms of cognitive behavior therapy should be included as part of the breast cancer treatment program to enhance optimistic thinking pattern thereby enhancing other positive outcomes of benefit-finding, and positive affect.

Keywords


Optimism, Benfit-findingg, Positive Affect, Negative Affect, Spirituality



DOI: https://doi.org/10.15614/ijpp%2F2013%2Fv4i1%2F49816