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Death Stud. 2006 Jan-Feb;30(1):77-85.

The daily life of complicated grief patients--what gets missed,what gets added?

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  • 1Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Room E-1123, 3811 O'Hara Street, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 15213, USA.


Many patients with complicated grief suffer severe symptoms for several years after the loss, interfering with daily life. We sought to determine which elements of a patient's daily routine were likely to be missed or added. Sixty-four patients completed a diary each evening for 2 weeks. The diary asked whether each of 13 daily life activities were done or missed on that day. Comparisons were made with 64 matched healthy control participants. Patients were significantly more likely than controls to miss contact with another person, breakfast, lunch, dinner, starting work, and going outside, and to add a nap and evening snack.

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