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Maturitas. 2014 May;78(1):51-5. doi: 10.1016/j.maturitas.2014.02.006. Epub 2014 Feb 25.

Somatosensory amplification and menopausal symptoms in breast cancer survivors and midlife women.

Author information

1
School of Nursing, Indiana University, Indianapolis, IN 46202, United States. Electronic address: carpentj@iu.edu.
2
School of Nursing, Indiana University, Indianapolis, IN 46202, United States.
3
School of Engineering and Technology, Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis, IN 46202, United States.
4
Department of Biostatistics and Medical Informatics, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI, United States.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

Somatosensory amplification is the experience of sensing everyday bodily sensations as intense, agitating, and unpleasant. Using data from menopausal breast cancer survivors and midlife women without cancer, the study purposes were to (1) explore the psychometric properties of the Somatosensory Amplification Scale and (2) to describe somatosensory amplification and its relationship to menopausal symptoms of hot flashes, mood and sleep disturbance.

STUDY DESIGN:

This was a cross-sectional, descriptive, correlational study using demographic, e-diary, and questionnaire data from 99 breast cancer survivors and 138 midlife women.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Somatosensory amplification, hot flashes (frequency, severity, bother, interference, perceived control), mood, and sleep.

RESULTS:

Cronbach's alphas for the scale were low. When an 8-item version of the scale was evaluated, alphas improved and item-total correlations remained strong or improved. Midlife women and breast cancer survivors did not have significantly different somatosensory amplification total or item scores after adjusting for group differences in demographics. Somatosensory amplification was significantly correlated with hot flash interference, perceived control over hot flashes, and mood and sleep disturbance in both groups but the patterns of correlations differed slightly between groups and depending on whether the 10-item or 8-item scale was used.

CONCLUSION:

Somatosensory amplification may be a relevant concept to assess in relation to the menopausal symptom experience of midlife women with and without breast cancer as it may represent a potential intervention target to improve the menopausal symptom experience.

KEYWORDS:

Menopausal symptoms; Menopause; Somatosensory amplification; Women's health

PMID:
24631194
PMCID:
PMC3995837
DOI:
10.1016/j.maturitas.2014.02.006
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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