Cognitive Processing and Posttraumatic Growth After Stroke

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Objective:To examine whether posttraumatic growth (PTG) after stroke is associated with cognitive processing and psychological distress and whether time since stroke moderates relationships between these variables.Method:A sample of stroke survivors (N = 60) completed the Posttraumatic Growth Inventory, the Cognitive Processing of Trauma Scale and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale.Results:PTG correlated positively with four indicators of cognitive processing (i.e., positive cognitive restructuring, downward comparison, resolution, and denial) and negatively with depression. Time since stroke moderated a number of these relationships. As length of time since stroke increased, the relationships between PTG and anxiety and depression became more negative and significant, and the relationships between PTG and downward comparisons and resolution became more positive and significant.Discussion:The findings indicate the possibility of PTG after stroke and suggest that cognitive processing is an important process for engendering such growth.

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