Written Emotional Disclosure (WED) and its effects on lung function: a community based randomised controlled trial of patients with asthma

Jones, Christina, Smith, Helen, Theadom, Alice, Horner, A, Bowskill, R, Hankins, Matthew and Frew, A (2009) Written Emotional Disclosure (WED) and its effects on lung function: a community based randomised controlled trial of patients with asthma. In: British Psychological Society, Division of Health Psychology Annual Conference 2009, 9-11 September 2009, Aston University.

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Abstract

Backgound: Asthma is a chronic condition affecting 300 million people worldwide. Management involves adherence to pharmacological treatments, such as corticosteroids and beta-agonists, but for many individuals residual symptoms persist. As asthma symptoms may be exacerbated by stress, one possible adjunct to pharmacological treatments is Written Emotional Disclosure (WED). WED is structured around the disclosure of traumatic experiences which can facilitate cognitive and emotional processing helping to reduce physiological stress associated with inhibition of emotions. One US study has suggested that WED used in a laboratory setting improved lung function in asthmatic patients. To have wide utility the intervention needs to be effective in an everyday setting without researcher supervision. Methods: 122 adults (aged 18 to 45) with asthma were randomly allocated to receive either WED or non-emotional writing instructions involving writing for 20 minutes over three consecutive days in their homes without supervision. Lung function, quality of life, symptoms, asthma control and medication use were measured at baseline, one- and three-month follow-up. Findings: No significant differences in lung function, quality of life or symptoms were observed. However, at three-month follow-up, participants in the intervention condition reported significantly better asthma control t(109)=2.76, p=.007 and reported using their reliever medication less t(92.71)=-2.74, p=.007. Discussion: WED has the potential to be a cheap and safe adjunct to medication, is easy to implement and may bring benefit to a large number of patients with asthma.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Poster)
Schools and Departments: Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Brighton and Sussex Medical School
Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Primary Care and Public Health
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Depositing User: Jane Hale
Date Deposited: 04 Aug 2015 12:08
Last Modified: 04 Aug 2015 12:18
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/55994
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