Affective differentiation in breast cancer patients

Department of Psychology, University of Delaware, Newark, DE 19716, USA.
Journal of Behavioral Medicine (Impact Factor: 3.1). 12/2010; 33(6):441-53. DOI: 10.1007/s10865-010-9274-8
Source: PubMed


Fifty-three breast cancer patients completed an Internet-based diary measuring daily negative affect and positive affect and daily negative and positive events for seven consecutive evenings shortly after surgery. The authors used Hierarchical Linear Modeling (Raudenbush and Bryk in Hierarchical linear models: applications and data analysis methods. Sage, Thousand Oaks, CA, 2002) to examine moderators of affective differentiation, or the daily relationship between the patients' negative affect and positive affect. Strong affective differentiation is characterized by the relative independence of negative and positive affect. There were no significant Level 1 (within-subject) moderators of affective differentiation. However, at Level 2 (between-subject), as predicted, increased age was associated with stronger affective differentiation, as was greater use of planning to cope with breast cancer. Also as predicted, increased anxiety and greater use of behavioral disengagement and denial coping were associated with weaker affective differentiation. The results suggest the value of the affective differentiation construct, and a daily diary methodology, for research on the daily lives of breast cancer patients.

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Available from: Amber J Belcher, Jul 15, 2014
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    • "In particular, our samples were largely comprised of Caucasian college students, and the results may not generalize to other populations. The restricted age range is also relevant considering that some studies have found that affective differentiation increases with age (Carstensen et al., 2000; Dasch et al., 2010). Finally, our measures of PA and NA assessed emotion over the preceding few hours in Study 1 (as compared to ''current mood'' in Studies 2 and 3), which does not necessarily capture the experience of those emotions simultaneously. "
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