Positive and negative psychosocial sequelae of bone marrow transplantation: implications for quality of life assessment

J Behav Med. 1996 Jun;19(3):221-40. doi: 10.1007/BF01857767.


Life-threatening disease can trigger positive effects such as greater appreciation for life and enhanced interpersonal relationships. Little research has examined these salutary effects or their association with quality of life (QOL). Adult bone marrow transplantation (BMT) survivors (n = 90) were interviewed regarding psychosocial sequelae of BMT and completed indices of QOL and psychological adjustment. Thematic analysis was used to code interview responses into discrete categories of negative and positive sequelae. Multiple regression analyses indicated POSTOTAL scores were inversely associated with time post-BMT and positively associated with negative prognostic factors at BMT. Scores on indices of QOL and psychological adjustment were significantly correlated with reports of negative post-BMT sequelae but unrelated to positive sequelae. It was concluded that life-threatening disease can trigger positive sequelae that can contribute to QOL. However, standard QOL indices may not measure this positive QOL dimension, thus yielding a potentially incomplete picture of current QOL.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Adult
  • Attitude to Health
  • Bone Marrow Transplantation / adverse effects
  • Bone Marrow Transplantation / psychology*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Life Change Events
  • Male
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Neoplasms / psychology
  • Neoplasms / therapy
  • Prognosis
  • Quality of Life*
  • Regression Analysis
  • Risk Factors
  • Sampling Studies
  • Social Adjustment
  • Stress, Psychological / psychology
  • Survivors / psychology
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome