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J Psychosom Res. 2014 Mar;76(3):200-6. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychores.2013.12.011. Epub 2014 Jan 5.

The PROSPECTS study: design of a prospective cohort study on prognosis and perpetuating factors of medically unexplained physical symptoms (MUPS).

Author information

  • 1Department of General Practice and Elderly Care Medicine, EMGO Institute, VU University Medical Center Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Electronic address: n.vandessel@vumc.nl.
  • 2Department of Public Mental Health, Netherlands Institute of Mental Health and Addiction, Utrecht, The Netherlands.
  • 3Department of General Practice and Elderly Care Medicine, EMGO Institute, VU University Medical Center Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
  • 4Department of General Practice and Elderly Care Medicine, EMGO Institute, VU University Medical Center Amsterdam, The Netherlands; Department of Rehabilitation Medicine and Department of Psychiatry, VU University Medical Center Amsterdam, The Netherlands; Reade, Centre of Rehabilitation and Rheumatology, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

This paper describes the rationale and methodology of the PROSPECTS study, a study which aims to assess the course and prognosis of medically unexplained physical symptoms (MUPS), in terms of symptom severity and physical and social functioning. Additionally, it aims to identify different course types and to determine which factors are associated with these course types. Based on these factors, one or more prediction models will be developed.

METHODS:

This study is a prospective, multicenter longitudinal cohort study with 1 baseline and 4 follow-up measurements during a 3 year period. 450 MUPS patients (age 18-70 years) will be included, divided over a primary care group, recruited in general practices, and a secondary/tertiary care group, recruited in specialized MUPS care programs.

MAIN STUDY PARAMETERS/ENDPOINTS:

Primary outcome measures are severity of symptoms and degree of functional impairment. Secondary outcome measures are health care consumption and level of depressive symptoms and anxiety. Potential predictors are based on current theoretical models describing the perpetuation of MUPS and include somatic, psychological and social factors. Latent Class Growth Mixture Modeling will be used to identify distinct course types. Logistic regression analysis will be used to identify risk factors associated with these course types. Finally, one or more multivariate prediction models for the course of MUPS will be developed and tested.

CONCLUSION:

The PROSPECTS study aims to enhance our insight into the course of MUPS, thus contributing to better recognition of future patients at risk for persistent MUPS.

Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

KEYWORDS:

Cohort study; Medically unexplained physical symptoms (MUPS); Prediction; Prognosis; Somatization; Somatoform disorders

PMID:
24529038
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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