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CAUSES OF LONELINESS OF THOSE AFFLICTED WITH LIFE-THREATENING ILLNESSES

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Abstract:

The pain of loneliness is a universal social phenomenon, which is intensified by the diagnosis of a terminal illness. This study was aimed at investigating the causes of loneliness as perceived by Multiple Sclerosis (MS) patients, those diagnosed with cancer, and the general population. 329 MS patients, 315 cancer patients, and 391 participants from the general population answered a 29-item questionnaire. Results indicated that with the exception of personal inadequacies and developmental deficits, those afflicted with MS and cancer perceived the causes of their loneliness to be significantly different from those of the general population. Men and women in each population differed significantly in their perception of loneliness.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2003.31.7.663

Publication date: January 1, 2003

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