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'The chicken and egg thing’: cognitive representations and self-management of multimorbidity in people with diabetes and depression

Mc Sharry, Jennifer, Bishop, Felicity L., Moss-Morris, Rona and Kendrick, Tony (2012) 'The chicken and egg thing’: cognitive representations and self-management of multimorbidity in people with diabetes and depression Psychology and Health (doi:10.1080/08870446.2012.716438).

Record type: Article


Objective: diabetes with depression is common and can lead to poorer outcomes in both conditions. The existing literature has demonstrated that patients’ single condition representations inform self-management, but less is known about the composition and impact of multimorbid representations. This study aimed to explore accounts of multimorbidity with a focus on the content of cognitive representations and reported management of diabetes and depression.

Design: semi-structured qualitative interviews were carried out with 17 people with diabetes and depression. Data were audio-taped, transcribed and analysed using an inductive thematic analysis and elements of grounded theory.

Results: the nature of multimorbid representations varied and some participants, in particular those who prioritised other conditions, described diabetes and depression as unrelated and managed each separately. Others saw interactions between conditions, often in terms of causation, and described how diabetes and depression management could be either integrated or conflicting. Problems taking multiple-medications were frequently described, but participants differed in the confidence with which they described representations of multimorbidity.

Conclusion: people hold multimorbid representations that appear to impact on their preferred self-management. An awareness of patients’ understanding of multimorbidity could have implications for the provision of care and intervention design in this population

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e-pub ahead of print date: 28 August 2012
Organisations: Primary Care & Population Sciences


Local EPrints ID: 342441
ISSN: 0887-0446
PURE UUID: 7807948c-5508-4c24-ad6b-c9a21a728bf9
ORCID for Felicity L. Bishop: ORCID iD
ORCID for Tony Kendrick: ORCID iD

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Date deposited: 30 Aug 2012 08:03
Last modified: 18 Jul 2017 05:29

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Author: Jennifer Mc Sharry
Author: Rona Moss-Morris
Author: Tony Kendrick ORCID iD

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