The role of perseverative negative thinking in predicting depression, anxiety and quality of life in people with coronary heart disease.
Trick, Leanne Victoria
Thesis or dissertation
University of Exeter
This thesis is available for Library use on the understanding that it is copyright material and that no quotation from the thesis may be published without proper acknowledgement. Embargo period of 18 months.
Reason for embargo
18 month embargo requested, to allow manuscripts to be prepared and submitted for peer review publication.
Depression is common in people with coronary heart disease (CHD) and is associated with worse physical outcomes. The nature of the causal association between CHD and depression, and the mechanism underpinning the association of depression with worse physical outcomes, remains unclear. Perseverative negative thinking may contribute to the development of depression in people with CHD. The aim of this thesis was to investigate the prospective association of perseverative negative thinking with depression, anxiety and worse physical outcomes in people with CHD, and to explore factors that may mediate this association. First, a systematic review identified 30 studies, of which the majority found an association between measures of perseverative negative thinking and subsequent depression, anxiety or emotional distress in people with long term conditions. Studies that controlled for covariates showed more mixed results, though the majority (15 / 25) still supported a significant association, with effects being small in magnitude. Findings were limited mainly to the association of rumination and/or catastrophizing with subsequent depression, and study quality was limited. Next, in an observational prospective cohort study 169 inpatients and outpatients with recent acute coronary syndrome (ACS) completed self-report assessments of rumination (Ruminative Responses Scale brooding subscale), worry (Penn State Worry Questionnaire), depression (Patient Health Questionnaire-8), anxiety (Beck Anxiety Inventory), and health-related quality of life (EuroQol-5D health-related quality of life, Seattle Angina Questionnaire) after hospitalisation, and at 2 month and 6 month follow-up. Additionally, assessments of potential mechanistic factors (social support, problem solving, instrumental behaviours and negative cognitive biases) were made. Baseline brooding was a significant independent predictor of depression at 6 months after controlling for the effects of important confounding variables, accounting for 2% of the variance. Findings suggested that the association of brooding with depression may be explained by deficits in problem solving ability. Rumination and problem solving may provide useful targets for the development of evidence-based interventions to improve depression among people with CHD, although the findings presented here fall short of proving a causal relationship. Future trials could be used to investigate the causal nature of the association of rumination and problem solving with depression in people with ACS.
PhD in Medical Studies