The relationship between adult attachment style and fibromyalgia as mediated by social cognition

Oracz, Karolina (2014) The relationship between adult attachment style and fibromyalgia as mediated by social cognition. D.Clin.Psychol. thesis, Canterbury Christ Church University.

KO MRP CORRECTED 11.2015.pdf - Accepted Version

Download (1MB) | Preview
[img] PDF (Declaration for MRP)
Oracz_2014_declaration.pdf - Supplemental Material
Restricted to Repository staff only

Download (131kB)


This study aimed to determine whether there are significant relationships between fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS), social cognition, and adult insecure attachments. It was also hypothesised that social cognition would mediate the relationship between insecure attachment style and FMS.
A quantitative, cross-sectional design was employed to compare experiences of 105 individuals with FMS and 172 healthy controls (HC). A correlation and a mediation analysis were used to explore relationships between insecure attachment, social cognition, and FMS symptoms. Data were obtained via self-report measures filled in either in paper form or via on-line questionnaire.
The relationships between anxious and avoidant attachment styles and FMS were confirmed. The significance of the relationship between social cognition and FMS varied depending on the measure used. When ability to recognise emotions in others was tested (Reading the mind in the eyes test) there were no significant differences between FMS and HC. However, the mentalization measure- Reflective Function Questionnaire, which additionally tests the ability to recognise one’s own feelings, showed a significant relationship with FMS. The relationship of FMS with both insecure attachment styles as well as with mentalization were strongly mediated by psychological distress. Social cognition was not shown to mediate the relationship between insecure attachment and FMS.
Although causality cannot be inferred, psychological distress was strongly related to FMS and significantly influenced the way FMS is related to insecure attachment and poor social cognition. Implications for clinical practice and future research are discussed.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Uncontrolled Keywords: fibromyalgia, functional somatic disorder, adult attachment, social cognition, mentalization, theory of mind, alexithymia, psychological distress.
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology > BF0511 Affection. Feeling. Emotion
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology > HM1001 Social psychology > HM1041 Social perception. Social cognition
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0925 Diseases of the musculoskeletal system > RC0927.3 Fibromyalgia
Divisions: Faculty of Social and Applied Sciences > School of Psychology, Politics and Sociology > Salomons Centre for Applied Psychology
Depositing User: Mrs Kathy Chaney
Date Deposited: 10 Feb 2016 11:20
Last Modified: 13 May 2018 12:45

Actions (login required)

Update Item (CReaTE staff only) Update Item (CReaTE staff only)


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics


Connect with us

Last edited: 29/06/2016 12:23:00