Conference Contribution Details
Mandatory Fields
Brennan, J., Hammond, S., O'Sullivan, D., Murphy, M. & O'Rourke, M.;
Psychology, Health and Medicine
The Psychological Impact on Prognosis: Introducing the Disease Resistance Questionnaire
Galway, Ireland
Poster Presentation
Optional Fields
The relationship between personality and health is an enduring topic of interest and has resulted in at least 4 distinct `types┐ or constellations of traits (types A, B C and D) said to have significant risk or protective impact on cardiac health. For instance, a tendency towards negative affectivity and social inhibition defines the type D person and appears to be related to poor cardiac prognosis. This is similar to the type C cluster of co-operative, unassertive, patient and suppressing traits that supposedly leads to cancer proneness rather than coronary disease. A principal caveat that infuses the research in this area is the fact that measurement of these constellations is often vague and psychometrically unconvincing.

The aim of this study was to develop a psychometrically robust measure that taps into both the type C and type D domain. This paper describes the development of a short 26-item inventory that reliably measures 3 super-ordinate facets of both type C and type D trait constellations. A total sample of 2093 respondents ranging in age from 18 to 77 were used in the development of the tool, now named the Disease Resistance Questionnaire (DRQ). While the reliability and construct validity of the DRQ appears strong, concurrent validation using the Grossarth-Maticek Personality-Stress Inventory, the Attitudes Towards Emotional Expression Scale, the Interpersonal Support Evaluation List 12 and the Generalized Self Efficacy Scale produced ambiguous results with little discrimination between the scales. These initial results highlight the clear overlap between the characteristics that define C and D types. In addition it is suggested that both C and D are likely to influence the response to disease after its onset rather than serve as indicators to disease proneness.