Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology

, Volume 15, Issue 2, pp 295–308 | Cite as

Psychosocial risk and resistance factors among children with chronic illness, healthy siblings, and healthy controls

  • Denise Daniels
  • Rudolf H. Moos
  • Andrew G. Billings
  • John J. MillerIII


Psychosocial risk and resistance factors within the domains of parental functioning, family Stressors, and family resources were examined as predictors of psychological adjustment and physical problems in juvenile rheumatic disease patients (N=93), their healthy siblings (N=72), and demographically matched healthy controls (N=93). Family socioeconomic status and background variables showed few consistent relationships with child functioning. However, a constellation of risk and resistance factors tended to show comparable associations with functioning for patients, siblings, and controls. Higher parental depression and medical symptoms and more family Stressors, sibling problems, and burden of illness on the family predicted more problems among the patients. These relationships held when disease duration and severity were controlled. For the siblings, increased parental and patient dysfunction, more family Stressors, and less family cohesion and expressiveness were associated with more problems. Although the associations were not as strong, mothers' depression and lack of family cohesion and expressiveness also were related to more adjustment problems among the control children. These findings imply that there may be a general association between certain risk and resistance factors and childhood adaptation.


Rheumatic Disease Parental Functioning Psychological Adjustment Control Child Resistance Factor 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • Denise Daniels
    • 1
  • Rudolf H. Moos
    • 1
  • Andrew G. Billings
    • 1
  • John J. MillerIII
    • 2
  1. 1.Social Ecology Laboratory, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral SciencesStanford University Medical Center and Palo Alto Veterans Administration Medical CenterStanford
  2. 2.Children's Hospital at StanfordStanford University Medical CenterUSA

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