Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login

Waiting is the hardest part: Anticipating medical test results affects processing and recall of important information

Contents:

Author Info

  • Portnoy, David B.
Registered author(s):

    Abstract

    Waiting for medical test results that signal physical harm can be a stressful and potentially psychologically harmful experience. Despite this, interventionists and physicians often use this wait time to deliver behavior change messages and other important information about the test, possible results and its implications. This study examined how "bracing" for a medical test result impacts cognitive processing, as well as recall of information delivered during this period. Healthy U.S. university students (N = 150) were tested for a deficiency of a fictitious saliva biomarker that was said to be predictive of long-term health problems using a 2 (Test Result) x 2 (Expected immediacy of result: 10 min, 1 month) factorial design. Participants expecting to get the test result shortly should have been bracing for the result. While waiting for the test results participants completed measures of cognitive processing. After participants received the test result, recall of information about the biomarker was tested in addition to cognitive measures. One week later, participants who were originally told they did not have the deficiency had their recall assessed again. Results showed that anticipating an imminent test result increased cognitive distraction in the processing of information and lowered recall of information about the test and the biomarker. These results suggest that delivering critical information to patients after administering a test and immediately before giving the results may not be optimal.

    Download Info

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6VBF-500SK19-1/2/718f30847e5bcdb029ca331e5290d2eb
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Social Science & Medicine.

    Volume (Year): 71 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 2 (July)
    Pages: 421-428

    as in new window
    Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:71:y:2010:i:2:p:421-428

    Contact details of provider:
    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/journaldescription.cws_home/315/description#description

    Order Information:
    Postal: http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/supportfaq.cws_home/regional
    Web: http://www.elsevier.com/orderme/journalorderform.cws_home/315/journalorderform1/orderooc/id=654&ref=654_01_ooc_1&version=01

    Related research

    Keywords: USA Experiment Medical testing Bracing Distraction Medical test results Recall;

    References

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    Citations

    Lists

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:71:y:2010:i:2:p:421-428. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei).

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.