Correlates of daily impairment in COPD


While considerable knowledge has accumulated in recent years concerning the important role of psychological factors in chronic medical conditions, a relative paucity of information exists on the role of emotional factors in chronic lung disease. The present report examined 16 patients with severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), as indicated by spirometry testing. Subjects reported the degree of difficulty in performing ten tasks of daily living and completed the SCL-90-R to assess a broad range of affective and somatic states. Results indicate that while restriction of three activities was correlated with severity of lung impairment, difficulty in performing daily activities appeared more consistently correlated with emotional functioning. In particular, SCL-90-R subscales of somatization, anxiety, and depression were correlated with behavioral impairment of multiple daily activities. Implications for psychosocial interventions in the rehabilitation of COPD patients are discussed, including the differential impact of stress management training and treatments for depression.

Publication Title

Rehabilitation Psychology