Predictors of support provision: A study with couples adapting to incontinence following radical prostatectomy

Authors


Dr Nina Knoll, Institute of Medical Psychology, Charité– Universitätsmedizin Berlin, Luisenstrasse 57, 10117 Berlin, Germany (e-mail: nina.knoll@charite.de).

Abstract

Objectives.  Four domains of predictors of support provision were tested in couples facing an illness-related stress context. Predictor domains of partners' support provision to patients adapting to incontinence following prostatectomy included stress factors, recipient factors, provider factors, and relationship factors.

Methods.  Data from 109 patients and their female partners were analysed. Couples provided data on five measurement occasions from 2 weeks to 1 year postsurgery. Predictors included patient's incontinence (stress factor), patient's support mobilization, affect and general self-efficacy (recipient factors), partner's affect and general self-efficacy (provider factors), partners' average waking time spent together, both partners' relationship satisfaction and partner's received support from patient (as an indicator of reciprocal support; relationship factors).

Results.  Provider factors were not reliably associated with support provision, neither was patient negative affect. Stress and relationship factors accounted for outcome variance in the expected directions. Among recipient factors, mobilization of support and patient self-efficacy were positively related with the outcome, whereas patient positive affect was negatively associated with support provision by partners.

Conclusions.  Findings on predictor domains are in line with other couple studies that used non-illness-related stress contexts. Resemblance of findings points to generalizability of predictions across stress contexts varying in content, controllability, and duration.

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