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Adv Ren Replace Ther. 1994 Oct;1(3):251-63.

Illness intrusiveness and the psychosocial impact of lifestyle disruptions in chronic life-threatening disease.

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Clarke Institute, of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.


Chronic life-threatening and disabling conditions, such as end-stage renal disease (ESRD), introduce significant psychosocial stressors and adaptive demands. The concept of illness intrusiveness is introduced to represent the illness-induced disruptions to lifestyle, activities, and interests that can compromise psychosocial well-being and contribute to emotional distress in chronic disease. A theoretical model is presented to specify the nature, determinants, and psychosocial consequences of illness intrusiveness and the causal pathways through which these factors are interrelated. Evidence in support of this analysis is reviewed and includes relevant findings from several chronic conditions including renal failure. The article concludes with suggested strategies and tactics for minimizing illness intrusiveness in ESRD. It is hoped that effective minimization of illness intrusiveness can assist affected individuals in achieving a high quality of life.

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