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Soc Sci Med. 1997 May;44(9):1357-65.

The impact of anomia as a factor in a demand resource model of health.

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Institute of Social Medicine, University of Graz, Austria.


The particular aim of the present study was to explore the interrelations between the construct of anomia, conceptualized as internal health demand or resource, and self-reported ill-health in the framework of a demand resource model. The four main constructs of this model were considered as recursive causal levels: (1) socio-economic data, (2) external resources/demands, (3) internal resources/ demands, and (4) ill-health. Study statistics comprised graphical models to reveal the relations between variables using the statistical program DIGRAM designed for discrete graphical models. This method of data analysis permits a focus on the link between anomia and the other three levels. The function of anomia as an intermediate data level which might prove to be an intervening variable can be evaluated. A total of 440 subjects of a random community sample were included in the final analysis. In the framework of a demand resource model, it was possible to confirm that the construct of anomia plays a key role in health outcome. Graphical models showed that a low degree of anomia is related to high psychological quality of life and few psychosomatic symptoms on the one hand, and to good social integration and emotional support, a low amount of daily hassles and high educational level on the other hand. As an overall conclusion, it can be stated that the evaluation by the graphical modeling procedure permits a good fit of theory with methods.

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