A qualitative investigation into the role of illness perceptions in endometriosis-related quality of life

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Abstract

Endometriosis is related to adverse quality of life (QoL) and wellbeing outcomes. The way in which endometriosis is perceived by individuals experiencing the condition has not been directly considered, yet illness perceptions (IPs) are predictors of QoL in several chronic conditions. This research aims to gain an understanding of the IPs held by individuals experiencing endometriosis and their impact on QoL. Semi-structured, one-to-one interviews with 30 UK-based participants sought to gain an understanding of participant experiences and perceptions linked to endometriosis. Three themes were constructed through reflexive thematic analysis: a life disrupted; lost sense of self; and complex emotional responses. Largely negative IPs were held by individuals experiencing endometriosis which, along with endometriosis-specific symptoms, fuelled fears for the future and reduced QoL. IP-based interventions may support the QoL of those experiencing endometriosis whilst effective treatment is sought.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1157-1171
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Health Psychology
Volume28
Issue number12
Early online date26 Jun 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 31 Oct 2023

Keywords

  • endometriosis
  • wellbeing
  • quality-of-life
  • Illness perceptions
  • qualitative

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