Quality of life in women with lipoedema: a contextual behavioral approach
- 557 Downloads
Lipoedema is a chronic, progressive adipose disorder of unknown etiology, often underdiagnosed or misdiagnosed as obesity. It manifests itself with accumulation of the fat in lower parts of the body and associated edema and, due to numerous physical and psychological consequences, affects the quality of life (QOL) of those who suffer. The aim of this study was to investigate the psychological factors that might have an impact on the QOL of women with lipoedema from the contextual behavioral viewpoint.
In an Internet-based cross-sectional study, women suffering from lipoedema (N = 120) were asked to fill in questionnaires assessing: symptom severity, QOL (WHOQOL-BREF), satisfaction with life (SWLS), psychological flexibility (Acceptance and Action Questionnaire-II), social connectedness (Social Connectedness Scale-Revised) and other psychological factors. The majority of participants were from the USA, the UK, and Australia.
Multiple hierarchical regression analyses showed that a higher level of QOL was predicted by higher levels of psychological flexibility and social connectedness, while controlling for symptom severity. Higher level of SWL was predicted only by higher level of social connectedness.
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy with psychological flexibility as the target of change and Functional Analytic Psychotherapy with social connectedness as the target of change might be useful in treating women with lipoedema; however, further research in this area is needed. The authors conclude that psychological and biomedical interventions for women with lipoedema and their QOL merit more attention from researchers and the medical community than is currently received.
KeywordsLipoedema Quality of life Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) Functional Analytic Psychotherapy (FAP) Psychological flexibility Social connectedness
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
This study has been approved by the relevant research ethics committee.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
- 3.Földi, M., & Földi, E. (2006). Földi’s textbook of lymphology: For physicians and lymphedema therapists (2nd ed.). Munich: Elsevier.Google Scholar
- 4.Bosman, J. (2011). Lipedema: Poor knowledge, neglect or disinterest? Journal of Lymphoedema, 6(2), 109.Google Scholar
- 8.Hayes, S. C., Strosahl, K. D., & Wilson, K. G. (2011). Acceptance and Commitment Therapy: The process and practice of mindful change (2nd ed.). New York: The Guilford Press.Google Scholar
- 9.Tsai, M., Kohlenberg, R. J., Kanter, J. W., Kohlenberg, B., Follette, W. C., & Callaghan, G. M. (2008). A guide to Functional Analytic Psychotherapy: Awareness, courage, love, and behaviorism. New York: Springer Science & Business Media.Google Scholar
- 10.Bond, F. W., Hayes, S. C., Baer, R. A., Carpenter, K. M., Guenole, N., Orcutt, H. K., et al. (2011). Preliminary psychometric properties of the Acceptance and Action Questionnaire-II: A revised measure of psychological inflexibility and experiential avoidance. Behavior Therapy, 42(4), 676–688.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- 18.Kanter, J. W., Holman, G., Wetterneck, C. T., Tsai, M., & Kohlenberg, R. J. (2014). A new contextual behavioral model for social connection for Functional Analytic Psychotherapy. In Presented at the symposium presented at the Association for Contextual Behavioral Science 12th Annual World Conference, Minneapolis, MN.Google Scholar
- 19.Reis, H. T., & Shaver, P. R. (1988). Intimacy as an interpersonal process. In S. Duck (Ed.), Handbook of research in personal relationships (pp. 367–389). London: Wiley.Google Scholar
- 20.Seppala, E., Rossomando, T., & Doty, J. R. (2013). Social connection and compassion: Important predictors of health and well-being. Social Research, 80(2), 411–430.Google Scholar
- 26.Skevington, S. M., Lotfy, M., O’Connel, K. A., & WHOQOL Group. (2004). The World Health Organization’s WHOQOL-BREF quality of life assessment: Psychometric properties and results of the international field trial. A report from the WHOQOL group. Quality of Life Research, 13(2), 299–310.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- 38.Danieli, E., Airò, P., Bettoni, L., Cinquini, M., Antonioli, C. M., Cavazzana, I., et al. (2005). Health-related quality of life measured by the Short Form 36 (SF-36) in systemic sclerosis: Correlations with indexes of disease activity and severity, disability, and depressive symptoms. Clinical Rheumatology, 24(1), 48–54.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- 41.Belsley, D. (1991). Conditioning diagnostics: Collinearity and weak data in regression. New York: Wiley.Google Scholar