Vol 10, No 3 (2009): Practical Diabetology
Review article
Published online: 2009-08-05

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The role of illness beliefs in adaptation to diabetes mellitus - the characteristics and review of the research

Anna Starowicz
Diabetologia Praktyczna 2009;10(3):92-100.

Abstract

The process of adaptation to diabetes mellitus is very complex. This disease requires from patients a great dose of selfdiscipline. The clinical practice brings the observation that patients with diabetes mellitus strongly differ between each other in the level of self control and fallowing doctor’s orders. The researchers more often try to explain this fact by analysing the individual, personal defferences between patients. They concentrate on such charakteristics as personality, coping with stress and personal illness beliefs. This article concentrate on the last factor- illness representation. It presents the genesis of this construct as well as its role in adaptation to diabetes mellitus. The main gole of this article is to present the research which concentrate on the role of such beliefs as: perceived severity of the illness, perceived vulnerability to diabetes complications, health locus of control and perceived social support in self care behaviors, glucose control and coping with stress.

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