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Determinants of surgery related anxiety in cataract patients
  1. M D Nijkamp1,2,3,
  2. C A Kenens1,
  3. A J M Dijker1,3,
  4. R A C Ruiter3,4,
  5. F Hiddema5,
  6. R M M A Nuijts6
  1. 1Maastricht University, Department of Health Education and Promotion, Netherlands
  2. 2Eye Research Institute Maastricht (ERIM), Netherlands
  3. 3The Care and Public Health Research Institute (CAPHRI), Netherlands
  4. 4Maastricht University, Department of Experimental Psychology, Netherlands
  5. 5Rotterdam Eye Hospital, Rotterdam, Netherlands
  6. 6University Hospital Maastricht, Department of Ophthalmology, Maastricht, Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to: M D Nijkamp PhD Department of Health Education and Promotion, Maastricht University, PO Box 616, 6200 MD Maastricht, Netherlands;


Background/aims: Not much is known about the relative importance of different determinants of anxiety in cataract patients. This study analysed the predictive value of factors related to surgery induced anxiety.

Methods: In 128 cataract patients, recruited from two hospitals (Medical Centre Maastricht Annadal (MCMA) and Rotterdam Eye Hospital (REH)), state anxiety was assessed at four different time points using the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI). The following predictive factors of anxiety were measured: trait anxiety, outcome expectancies, doctor-patient relationship, coping strategy, social support, information supply, sociodemographic variables, and previous cataract surgery. Repeated measures ANOVA, t tests, multiple regression analysis, and correlations were used to analyse data.

Results: In general patients reported little anxiety. The level of anxiety (scale 1–4) was the highest before surgery, decreased immediately after surgery, and increased again after the postoperative visit. Patients with higher trait anxiety levels (r = 0.41; p<0.01), and women (r = 0.30; p<0.01) reported more anxiety. The REH patients showed lower anxiety scores than the MCMA patients.

Conclusion: Women and patients with higher trait anxiety were more likely to experience higher levels of state anxiety. Positive outcome expectancies and social support may decrease anxiety.

  • cataract
  • anxiety
  • phacoemulsification
  • questionnaires

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