Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and Sense of Coherence Among Women with Fibromyalgia

  • Inka Weissbecker
  • Paul Salmon
  • Jamie L. Studts
  • Andrea R. Floyd
  • Eric A. Dedert
  • Sandra E. SephtonEmail author


Sense of Coherence (SOC) is conceptualized as a disposition to experience life as meaningful and manageable. Research suggests a protective effect of SOC on psychological health in stressful circumstances. This study assessed the capacity of SOC to buffer the effect of illness symptoms on psychological distress among patients with fibromyalgia. Self-reported changes in SOC after participation in a Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program were also examined. Ninety-one women with fibromyalgia provided baseline data pertaining to illness symptoms, perceived stress, and depression prior to participation in a randomized trial of MBSR. SOC and fibromyalgia symptoms were independently related to perceived stress and depression at baseline. SOC was not a statistically significant moderator of symptom effects on psychological distress. In comparison with wait-listed controls, program participants reported a significant increase in SOC after MBSR participation. These results provide the first demonstration from a randomized trial that SOC may be enhanced via intervention.

fibromyalgia chronic pain meditation Sense of Coherence depression 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Inka Weissbecker
    • 1
  • Paul Salmon
    • 1
  • Jamie L. Studts
    • 2
  • Andrea R. Floyd
    • 1
  • Eric A. Dedert
    • 1
  • Sandra E. Sephton
    • 3
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Psychological and Brain SciencesUniversity of LouisvilleLouisville
  2. 2.Department of Medicine, Division of Hematology/OncologyUniversity of Louisville School of MedicineLouisville
  3. 3.Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral SciencesUniversity of LouisvilleLouisville

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