The child with cancer: Patterns of communication and denial

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Results of a study with 16 6-10 yr olds with leukemia indicate that the level of family communication about the illness, as expressed in the mother's judgment of communication, was correlated with 3 of the 4 hypothesized responses (exhibited a nondefensive personal posture, expressed a long-range close relationship with the parents, and expressed a basic satisfaction with self) in the child. The study demonstrates the usefulness of 3 instruments (a scale of defensiveness, an interpersonal distance scale and the Family Relations Test) as effective tools in measuring the child's reactions to the illness. (7 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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