Lydia Poole

University College London, Londinium, England, United Kingdom

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Publications (20)81.3 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: To determine the prospective association between health-related control beliefs, quality of life (QOL), depression symptoms, and health behaviours in coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) patients 6-8 weeks following surgery. 149 patients who were undergoing planned CABG surgery were recruited. Patients completed questionnaires measuring health related personal control, treatment control, depression symptoms, QOL, and health behaviours prior to and 6-8 weeks after surgery. Higher levels of health-related personal control predicted better QOL, and lower levels of depression symptoms, but not adherence to medication, cardiac rehabilitation attendance, or physical activity. These results were independent of demographic, behavioural, and clinical covariates. Treatment control was not associated with any outcome. These results suggest that perceived health-related personal control is associated with key aspects of short-term recovery from CABG surgery. Targeted interventions aimed at improving perceptions of health-related personal control may improve health outcomes in this cardiac population.
    Full-text · Article · Sep 2015 · Journal of Behavioral Medicine
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    ABSTRACT: There is growing evidence that the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis plays a role in the progression of cardiovascular disease. We examined the relationship between diurnal cortisol rhythm and adverse events in patients undergoing coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery. We hypothesized that a flatter pre-surgical diurnal cortisol slope would be associated with higher rates of adverse cardiac events and death in the years following the CABG procedure. Repeated measures of saliva were taken over the day from 250 CABG patients a month before surgery in order to assess diurnal cortisol slope and overall output (area under the curve). Long term clinical outcomes were occurrence of a major adverse cardiac event (MACE) and death, and were collected up to 2.68 (SD = 0.40) years after surgery. Cox proportional hazard models were used to determine relationships between pre-surgical cortisol and clinical outcomes. EuroSCORE, chronic illness burden, and whether or not the patient had undergone cardiopulmonary bypass were included as covariates in the models. Diurnal cortisol slope predicted the occurrence of MACE or death following surgery (hazard ratio = 0.73, 95% CI = 0.56 - 0.96, p = 0.023). Patients with a steeper slope were at reduced risk of adverse outcomes. This association was driven by changes in both waking and evening cortisol levels. These results provide evidence for a link between diurnal cortisol rhythm and recovery after CABG. Measuring diurnal cortisol slope before surgery may help to identify those patients at risk of adverse outcomes in the years following the procedure.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2015 · Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism
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    ABSTRACT: Background Depressed mood and stress are associated with recurrent adverse outcomes following acute coronary syndrome (ACS), but the impact of psychological coping style has not been evaluated in detail. Aims We tested the relationship between task-oriented coping and event-free survival following ACS. Method We followed 158 patients with ACS for an average of 59.8 months for major adverse cardiac outcomes. Psychological coping was assessed with the Coping Inventory of Stressful Situations. Results Compared with patients in the lower half of the distribution, those reporting higher task-oriented coping had a reduced hazard of adverse cardiac events (hazard ratio (HR) = 0.28, 95% CI 0.11-0.68, P = 0.005) independently of demographic, clinical and behavioural covariates. The combination of low task-oriented coping and high depressive symptoms showed a strong association with adverse outcomes (HR = 6.25, 95% CI 1.88-20.82, P = 0.003). Conclusions The tendency to cope using task-oriented strategies may promote event-free survival following ACS. © The Royal College of Psychiatrists 2015.
    Full-text · Article · May 2015 · The British journal of psychiatry: the journal of mental science

  • No preview · Article · Apr 2015 · Journal of the American College of Cardiology
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    ABSTRACT: Objective: Optimism is associated with reduced cardiovascular mortality, but its impact on recovery after acute coronary syndrome (ACS) is poorly understood. We hypothesized that greater optimism would lead to more effective physical and emotional adaptation after ACS and would buffer the impact of persistent depressive symptoms on clinical outcomes. Methods: This prospective observational clinical study took place in an urban general hospital and involved 369 patients admitted with a documented ACS. Optimism was assessed with a standardized questionnaire. The main outcomes were physical health status, depressive symptoms, smoking, physical activity, and fruit and vegetable consumption measured 12 months after ACS, and composite major adverse cardiac events (cardiovascular death, readmission with reinfarction or unstable angina, and coronary artery bypass graft surgery) assessed over an average of 45.7 months. Results: We found that optimism predicted better physical health status 12 months after ACS independently of baseline physical health, age, sex, ethnicity, social deprivation, and clinical risk factors (B = 0.65, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.10-1.20). Greater optimism also predicted reduced risk of depressive symptoms (odds ratio = 0.82, 95% CI = 0.74-0.90), more smoking cessation, and more fruit and vegetable consumption at 12 months. Persistent depressive symptoms 12 months after ACS predicted major adverse cardiac events over subsequent years (odds ratio = 2.56, 95% CI = 1.16-5.67), but only among individuals low in optimism (optimism × depression interaction; p = .014). Conclusions: Optimism predicts better physical and emotional health after ACS. Measuring optimism may help identify individuals at risk. Pessimistic outlooks can be modified, potentially leading to improved recovery after major cardiac events.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2015 · Psychosomatic Medicine
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    ABSTRACT: Objective: To examine the association between psychological factors and length of intensive care unit (ICU) stay in patients undergoing elective coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery. Method: We studied 212 adults undergoing CABG surgery preoperatively to assess depression symptoms, anxiety symptoms, and illness perceptions and then followed them up during the in-hospital stay to measure length of ICU stay. Results: Greater preoperative concern about the illness (B = .200, 95% CI [.094, .305], p = < .001), but not depression or anxiety symptoms, was significantly related to longer ICU stays after controlling for demographic, clinical, and behavioral covariates. Conclusions: Illness concern may be particularly relevant for CABG recovery, though more work is needed to delineate the exact mechanisms of this effect.
    No preview · Article · Dec 2014 · Health Psychology
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    ABSTRACT: Objective Optimism is thought to be associated with long-term favourable outcomes for patients undergoing coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery. Our objective was to examine the association between optimism and post-operative pain and physical symptoms in CABG patients. Methods We assessed optimism pre-operatively in 197 adults undergoing CABG surgery, and then followed them up 6-8 weeks after the procedure to measure affective pain, pain intensity, and physical symptom reporting directly pertaining to CABG surgery. Results Greater optimism measured pre-operatively was significantly associated with lower pain intensity (β = -0.150, CI = -0.196 - -0.004, p = .042) and fewer physical symptoms following surgery (β = -0.287, CI = -0.537 - -0.036, p = .025), but not with affective pain, after controlling for demographic, clinical and behavioural covariates, including negative affectivity. Conclusions Optimism is a modest, yet significant, predictor of pain intensity and physical symptom reporting after CABG surgery. Having positive expectations may promote better recovery.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2014 · Journal of Psychosomatic Research
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    ABSTRACT: Objective The mechanisms underlying the association between adult attachment and health are not well understood. In the current study, we investigated the relationship between attachment anxiety, attachment avoidance, inflammation, and length of hospital stay in coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery patients. Method 167 CABG patients completed an attachment questionnaire prior to surgery, and blood samples were taken before and after surgery to assess inflammatory activity. Results We found that attachment anxiety predicted higher plasma interleukin 6 (IL-6) concentration, and this association was mediated by self-reported sleep quality. Anxious attachment also predicted longer hospital stays following CABG surgery, even after controlling for demographic and clinical factors. Conclusion These data suggest that increased levels of IL-6 may be a process linking adult attachment anxiety with health outcomes.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2014 · Journal of Psychosomatic Research
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    ABSTRACT: Sleep and health are closely interrelated and sleep quality is a well-known contributor to perceived health. However, effects of sleep-timing preference i.e. morningness-eveningness on health has yet to be revealed. In this study, we explored the relationship between morningness-eveningness and perceived health in a sample of female working professionals (N = 202). Sleep-timing preference was measured using the Composite Scale of Morningness. Perceived health was characterized by Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale, WHO Well-Being Scale-5 and Patient Health Questionnaire-15 scores. We also investigated possible mechanisms, including stress and health-impairing behaviours. In accordance with previous data, we found more depressive mood, lower well-being and poorer perceived health among evening types. To assess health-impairing behaviours we collected data on smoking habits, alcohol consumption, physical activity and diet. Among the possible mechanism variables, greater stress, less frequent physical activity and less healthy diet were associated with eveningness. Furthermore, stress diminished the strength of the association between morningness-eveningness and depressed mood. Physical activity attenuated the strength of the association between morningness-eveningness and well-being. No effects of alcohol consumption could be identified. Our data show that evening preference behaves as a health risk in terms of associating with poor perceived health. Our findings also suggest that this effect might be mediated by health behaviours and stress.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2014 · Chronobiology International
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    ABSTRACT: Objective To understand the association between pre-operative depression symptoms, including cognitive and somatic symptom subtypes, and length of post-operative stay in patients undergoing coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery, and the role of socioeconomic status (SES). Methods We measured depression symptoms using the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and household income in the month prior to surgery in 310 participants undergoing elective, first-time, CABG. Participants were followed-up post-operatively to assess the length of their hospital stay. Results We showed that greater pre-operative depression symptoms on the BDI were associated with a longer hospital stay (hazard ratio = 0.978, 95% CI 0.957–0.999, p = .043) even after controlling for covariates, with the effect being observed for cognitive symptoms of depression but not somatic symptoms. Lower SES augmented the negative effect of depression on length of stay. Conclusions Depression symptoms interact with socioeconomic position to affect recovery following cardiac surgery and further work is needed in order to understand the pathways of this association.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2013 · Journal of psychosomatic research
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    ABSTRACT: Sleep disturbance is associated with poorer outcomes in cardiac patients, but little is known about the independent role of sleep quality in coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) patients. This study aims to examine the relationship between preoperative sleep complaints and post-operative emotional and physical recovery in CABG surgery patients, independently of demographic, clinical and mood factors. Two hundred thirty CABG patients (aged 67.81 ± 9.07 years) completed measures of self-reported sleep complaints before surgery and health-related quality of life (HRQoL), physical symptoms and pain 2 months after surgery. Greater sleep complaints prior to surgery were associated with greater physical symptoms, poorer physical HRQoL and greater sensory pain after surgery (p < 0.05), but not with affective pain or mental HRQoL. Preoperative mood was not able to explain these associations. Sleep complaints may be implicated in physical recovery from CABG surgery but further work is needed to understand the role of causal pathways.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2013 · Annals of Behavioral Medicine
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    ABSTRACT: This study aimed to explore the role of C-reactive protein (CRP) in mediating the association between greater pre-operative depression symptoms and longer post-operative length of stay in patients undergoing coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery. We used a sample of 145 elective CABG patients and measured depression symptoms using the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) prior to surgery and collected baseline measures of CRP. Participants were followed up during their in-hospital stay to measure early (1-3 days post-surgery) and persistent (4-8 days post-surgery) CRP responses to surgery. We found that compared with participants with low depression symptoms, those with elevated depression symptoms (BDI >10) prior to CABG were at increased odds of a hospital stay of greater than one week (OR 3.51, 95% CI 1.415-8.693, p = 0.007) and that greater persistent CRP responses mediated this association. Further work is needed to explore the exact physiological pathways through which depression and CRP interact to affect recovery in CABG patients.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2013 · Brain Behavior and Immunity
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    ABSTRACT: Stress cardiomyopathy (SCM) typically presents similar symptoms to acute myocardial infarction (AMI). However, these symptoms differ when it comes to a transient and completely reversible myocardial dysfunction, which is frequently precipitated by acute stressful events, occurring in the absence of plaque rupture and coronary thrombosis. The purpose of this study was to investigate health-related quality of life (HRQL) and emotional burden subsequent to cardiac events in SCM patients. Thirty-seven SCM patients were compared with 37 matched AMI patients. All selected patients were assessed for HRQL and psychological distress at baseline and 1-year after the acute event. After controlling for covariates, scores on the Psychological General Well Being Index indicated that depressed mood had increased in both groups, but the increase for SCM patients was greater than for AMI patients. The AMI group displayed greater decreases than the SCM in physical quality of life and in total cardiac-related health quality of life. The percentage of patients with psychological distress increased significantly more in the SCM group than in the AMI group, and it made no difference whether the triggering event was emotional or physical. Our results suggest that, despite the more favorable medical prognosis of SCM patients, their cardiac condition being transient and resolving completely in few weeks, the psychological impact associated with their condition is more negative 1 year later than in the case of AMI patients whose medical prognosis is less favorable, and this difference is independent of type of trigger event.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2013 · Journal of Clinical Psychology in Medical Settings
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    ABSTRACT: There is emerging evidence for a link between sedentary behavior and mental health, although the mechanisms remain unknown. We tested if an underlying inflammatory process explains the association between sedentary behavior and depressive symptoms. We conducted a two year follow-up of 4,964 (aged 64.5 ± 8.9 yrs) men and women from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing, a cohort of community dwelling older adults. Self-reported TV viewing time was assessed at baseline as a marker of leisure time sedentary behavior. The 8-item Centre of Epidemiological Studies Depression (CES-D) scale was administered to measure depressive symptoms at follow-up. At baseline, TV time was associated with C-reactive protein (CRP), adjusted geometric mean CRP values were 2.94mg/L, (<2hrs/d TV); 3.04 mg/L, (2 to 4 hrs/d TV); 3.29mg/L, (4 to 6 hrs/d TV); 3.23 mg/L, (>6 hrs/d TV). We observed both a direct association of TV time on CES-D score at follow-up (B =0.08, 95% CI, 0.05, 0.10) and indirect effects (B =0.07, 95% CI, 0.05, 0.08). The indirect effects were largely explained through lack of physical activity, smoking, and alcohol, but not by CRP or body mass index.
    Full-text · Article · May 2013 · Brain Behavior and Immunity

  • No preview · Article · Jan 2013 · Journal of Clinical Psychology in Medical Settings
  • Mark Hamer · Romano Endrighi · Lydia Poole
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    ABSTRACT: Psychosocial factors, such as chronic mental stress and mood, are recognized as an important predictor of longevity and wellbeing. In particular, depression is independently associated with cardiovascular disease and all-cause mortality, and is often comorbid with chronic diseases that can worsen their associated health outcomes. Regular exercise is thought to be associated with stress reduction and better mood, which may partly mediate associations between depression, stress, and health outcomes. The underlying mechanisms for the positive effects of exercise on wellbeing remain poorly understood. In this overview we examine epidemiological evidence for an association between physical activity and mental health. We then describe the exercise withdrawal paradigm as an experimental protocol to study mechanisms linking exercise, mood, and stress. In particular we will discuss the potential role of the inflammatory response as a central mechanism.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2012 · Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.)
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    Lydia Poole · Chris Dickens · Andrew Steptoe
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    ABSTRACT: The relationship between depression and coronary heart disease is well-established, but causal mechanisms are poorly understood. The aim of this review is to stimulate different ways of viewing the relationship between depression and adverse outcomes following acute coronary syndrome (ACS) and coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery patients. We present an argument for depression in ACS and CABG patients being a qualitatively distinct form from that observed in psychiatric populations. This is based on three features: (1) depression developing after cardiac events has been linked in many studies to poorer outcomes than recurrent depression; (2) somatic symptoms of depression following cardiac events are particularly cardiotoxic; (3) depression following an ACS does not respond well to antidepressant treatments. We propose that inflammation is a common causal process responsible in part both for the development of depressive symptoms and for adverse cardiac outcomes, and we draw parallels with inflammation-induced sickness behaviour. Clinical implications of our observations are discussed along with suggestions for further work to advance the field.
    Preview · Article · Aug 2011 · Journal of psychosomatic research
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    ABSTRACT: Mechanisms underlying the relationship between exercise and mood are not well understood. This study sought to investigate the role of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines and autonomic balance in determining the impact of exercise withdrawal on negative mood. Healthy men and women who regularly exercised (N = 26, mean age = 25.5 years, SD = 4.5 years) were randomised to exercise withdrawal or exercise maintenance for 2 weeks. Protocol adherence was monitored using accelerometers. Inflammatory markers from plasma (interleukin-6, IL-6; tumour necrosis factor-alpha; interleukin-10; and interleukin-1 receptor antagonist), heart-rate variability (HRV) and measures of mood (General Health Questionnaire-28 (GHQ) and the Profile of Mood States (POMS)) were assessed at study entry and at 2-week follow-up. Exercise withdrawal resulted in significant increases in negative mood over time on both the GHQ (p = 0.028) and the POMS (p = 0.005). Following the intervention, IL-6 concentration was lower in the exercise withdrawal than exercise maintenance condition (p = 0.05). No intervention effects were observed for other cytokines or HRV. The mood changes were significantly related to changes in IL-6 concentration (β = - 0.50, p = 0.011), indicating that reduction in IL-6 was related to increased negative mood. Our results are consistent with positive effects of exercise on mental health, but further research on inflammatory pathways is warranted.
    No preview · Article · Mar 2011 · Stress (Amsterdam, Netherlands)
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to examine associations of objectively measured physical activity with daily mood ratings and psychophysiological stress responses. We recruited 40 healthy females (aged 28.7 ± 6.1 yrs) who completed a once-a-day mood rating scale for 7 days, along with a 7-day assessment of physical activity using accelerometers and psychophysiological stress testing. The findings suggest that levels of physical activity as measured using an accelerometer are associated with both depressive symptoms over the past 2 weeks (CES-D) (r = - .33, p = .038) and with daily positive emotional style (r = .49, p = .001). The relationship between physical activity and positive emotional style remained after controlling for age, body mass index, and negative emotional style (t = 3.31, p = .002). Physical activity was not related to any psychophysiological stress responses.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2011 · Psychophysiology
  • Andrew Steptoe · Lydia Poole
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    ABSTRACT: The assessment of biological parameters in relation to psychosocial, emotional, and behavioral factors is a cornerstone of behavioral medicine. This chapter provides an introduction to the use of biological variables, focusing on their measurement in three principle settings: epidemiological and population studies, psychophysiological stress testing in the laboratory or clinic, and naturalistic and ambulatory monitoring in everyday life. Each paradigm has strengths and limitations and serves particular purposes in behavioral medicine. Integration of knowledge obtained from these different strategies is needed in order to generate a comprehensive understanding of the relationship between biological parameters and the social and psychological environment in health and disease.
    No preview · Chapter · Jan 2010