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J Health Psychol. 2010 Jan;15(1):131-7. doi: 10.1177/1359105309345554.

Pain, coping and health care utilization in younger and older adults with sickle cell disease.

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VA Connecticut Healthcare System & Yale University School of Medicine, West Haven, CT 06516, USA.


Sickle cell disease is characterized by acute pain crises. Pain, chronic medical problems, utilization and coping were compared in younger vs older patients using questionnaires and medical record review. Groups reported similar pain intensity and medical conditions. The pattern of utilization differed such that older patients attended outpatient clinic, and younger patients went to the Emergency Department. Younger patients were more likely to cope by ignoring pain, or by using heat, cold or massage. Older patients were more likely to pray and hope. We conclude that age plays an important role in the utilization and coping of sickle cell patients.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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