Abstract: In a pre-post-examination 215, resp. 200 medical students participated in a study about their interests, ideas, expectations and personality traits as well as about actual experiences and coping strategies with regard to the dissection course. 120 students completed both questionnaires (pre and post test). This sample was used for further analyses. – The data show particular expectations concerning "support by the assistant" and provision of knowledge about the corpse. Many students regard the…work in the dissection hall as "repulsive" and "unpleasant". During the course, the support given by the assistant plays a crucial role for the students' adjustment. Only few students report a feeling of having to perform "repulsive work". Those students, however, who start the course with a "bad" feeling are more likely to continue that feeling. The students do not wish to start the first dissection with handling the head or the genitals, and they are reluctant to proceed to special parts of the body, especially to the arms and the head. – The medical students hardly differ from other students with regard to personality traits and coping strategies. There is a relationship between the expectation of an aversive experience and stress coping mechanisms. – The results of this study suggest the introduction of a preparation course for the dissecting work. In this course, speaking about technical, organizational and emotional questions could have a positive effect on the helplessness at the beginning. Expectations and anxieties could be clarified. This preparation course could be the first step of a medical education with a focus on issues of death and dying.
Keywords: education, dissecting course, corpse, physical and mental effects
Abstract: Epileptic children and adolescents who cannot reach a satisfactory control of their seizures by pharmacological treatment may benefit from neurosurgery. Surgical treatment provides an alternative that often results in total freedom of seizures or, at least, in a remarkable reduction of their frequency. However, the psychosocial consequences have not been systematically reviewed so far. The present article gives an overview over studies that investigated the psychosocial adjustment of children and adolescents and their…families after epilepsy surgery. Indicators of psychosocial adjustment are: satisfaction with the outcome of the operation, behavioral adjustment, integration at school, and health-related quality of life. Even though most studies report positive effects of epilepsy surgery, important questions remain unsolved. Future studies should focus on identifying the predominant areas of life that benefit from an improved control of the seizures, the risks and the protecting factors that influence coping with surgery and the consequences of less successful operations with only little or no improvement regarding the control of seizures.
Keywords: epilepsy, surgery, child psychology, coping quality of life
Abstract: In diabetes mellitus, eating disorders are associated with an increased rate of complications and subsequent illness. For this reason eating disorders should be diagnosed at an early stage of the illness. Consequently, we developed and evaluated a self administered screening instrument especially for this target group based on emotional and behavioural items. The sample consists of 400 female inpatients of a diabetes centre with a diagnosis of diabetes and of 30 female inpatients of a psychosomatic…clinic without a diagnosis of diabetes and with a diagnosis of eating disorders. A factor analysis under inclusion of all the 45 items of the questionnaire reveals seven dimensions. Cut-off-points allow a separation of patients with eating disorders from those with normal eating behaviour. The sensitivity of the final scale amounts to 93%, the specificity to 74%. We recommend to use the questionnaire as a screening instrument for eating disorders in diabetic patients.
Abstract: A study of the biblical texts allows a classification of religious coping strategies according to their phenomenology: the preventive strategy, the "quest for meaning" strategy and the "prayer" strategy. In the first part, several behaviour patterns are assigned to each of these strategies. The second part of the article introduces two empirically deduced conceptualisations of religious coping behaviours. The first one refers to a three-dimensional concept ascribing the responsibility for the solution of the…problem either to the person, to God or to both of them. The second one postulates two dimensions: the person's religious beliefs and religious relations with God and the religious satisfaction as part of a general satisfaction with life.
Keywords: religiosity, coping, religious coping, classification, coping strategies
Abstract: Perceived benefit may contribute to clarify processes of coping with adverse and traumatic events. This study evaluates the psychometric properties of the Benefit Finding Scale (Antoni et al., 2001) in a sample of 136 German cancer patients (predominantly suffering from gastrointestinal cancer) 12 months post-surgery. The scale comprises 17 items and assesses benefit finding in different domains, including acceptance of the imperfections of life, interpersonal growth and closeness to others, better coping abilities, and…development of new purposes and priorities. The principle research questions address the possible application in the German culture and the equivalence to the American version. Findings are in accordance with our expectations, and, additionally, suggest an abbreviation of the scale without a significant loss of reliability. Moreover, there is evidence for a good validity of the scale.
Keywords: Benefit Finding, Search for Meaning, Cancer, Tumor