Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: http://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.626964
Title: The role of attentional bias in medically unexplained symptoms, somatoform disorders and habitual symptom reporting
Author: Thompson, James
Awarding Body: University of Manchester
Current Institution: University of Manchester
Date of Award: 2014
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Abstract:
This thesis focusses on the role of attentional bias for health-threat information in the production and maintenance of medically unexplained symptoms, somatoform disorders and high levels of physical symptom reporting. It is comprised of three separate papers. Paper 1 was prepared for Clinical Psychology Review as a systematic review of the evidence concerning attentional bias for health–threat information in populations presenting with somatoform/somatic symptom disorders and high levels of physical symptom reporting. From the 20 studies deemed relevant for review, it was concluded that - although limited - the evidence indicated that a relationship existed between attentional bias for health-threat information and levels of physical symptom reporting. No robust evidence was found to establish whether this relationship was a casual one. Paper 2 was prepared for Journal of Abnormal Psychology and investigated whether an exogenous cueing task could be used to reduce presumed attentional bias for health-threat information in a sample of high symptom reporting students. The results showed an unexpected attentional avoidance of health-threat information at baseline, which the study manipulation unintentionally exacerbated. No change in levels of physical symptom reporting was noted between groups (attributed to a methodological error) but a trend in relatively greater anxiety for those who received the manipulation was noted. It was concluded that avoidance may be a key factor in high symptom reporting and that this merited further research. Paper 3 provided a critical reflection of Papers 1 and 2, as well as the research process as a whole. Implications for theory and clinical practice as well as future research directions were discussed.
Supervisor: Poliakoff, Ellen; Brown, Richard Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.626964  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Medically unexplained symptoms ; somatoform disorder ; habitual symptom reporting ; attentional bias
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