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Vol. 77, No. 6, 2008
Issue release date: September 2008
Section title: Special Article
Psychother Psychosom 2008;77:337–350
(DOI:10.1159/000151387)

The Illness Attitude Scales

A Clinimetric Index for Assessing Hypochondriacal Fears and Beliefs

Sirri L.a · Grandi S.a · Fava G.A.a, b
aDepartment of Psychology, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy; bDepartment of Psychiatry, State University of New York at Buffalo, Buffalo, N.Y., USA

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Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Special Article

Published online: 8/14/2008
Issue release date: September 2008

Number of Print Pages: 14
Number of Figures: 0
Number of Tables: 0

ISSN: 0033-3190 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0348 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/PPS

Abstract

Background: The Illness Attitude Scales (IAS) were developed by Robert Kellner as a clinimetric index for measuring hypochondriacal fears and beliefs (worry about illness, concerns about pain, health habits, hypochondriacal beliefs, thanatophobia, disease phobia, bodily preoccupations, treatment experience and effects of symptoms). The IAS have been extensively used in the past two decades, but there has been no comprehensive review of their properties and applications. Methods: A review of the literature using both computerized (Medline, PsycINFO) and manual searches was performed. Results: The IAS were found to successfully discriminate between hypochondriacal patients and control subjects, and between patients with various manifestations of illness behaviour. They showed a high test-retest reliability in normal subjects, and changed in the expected direction after treatment of hypochondriasis. The IAS were also positively related to other hypochondriasis-related measures, and yielded important information in a variety of medical and surgical settings. Their content has paved the way for the development of some of the Diagnostic Criteria for Psychosomatic Research. Conclusions: The clinimetric properties and high sensitivity of the IAS make them the gold standard for the self-rated assessment of hypochondriacal fears and beliefs.

© 2008 S. Karger AG, Basel


  

Author Contacts

Laura Sirri, PhD
Department of Psychology, University of Bologna
Viale Berti Pichat 5
IT–40127 Bologna (Italy)
Tel. +39 051 209 1349, Fax +39 051 243 086, E-Mail laurasirri@libero.it

  

Article Information

Published online: August 14, 2008
Number of Print Pages : 14
Number of Figures : 0, Number of Tables : 0, Number of References : 187

  

Publication Details

Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics

Vol. 77, No. 6, Year 2008 (Cover Date: September 2008)

Journal Editor: Fava G.A. (Bologna)
ISSN: 0033–3190 (Print), eISSN: 1423–0348 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/PPS


Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Special Article

Published online: 8/14/2008
Issue release date: September 2008

Number of Print Pages: 14
Number of Figures: 0
Number of Tables: 0

ISSN: 0033-3190 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0348 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/PPS


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