Psychological and behavioural effects of bone density screening for osteoporosis

Katharine A Rimes, Paul M Salkovskis, A Shipman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (SciVal)


298 32-73 yr old women were assessed 2 wks before the bone density scan, immediately before the scan, after the results, a week later and 3 mo later as part of a study that aimed to (1) assess distress associated with bone density measurement, to inform the general debate over the value of this type of screening; (2) examine changes in illness beliefs, and (3) assess changes in osteoporosis-preventative behaviors after bone density measurement. Results indicate that the impact of screening was modified by the type of result obtained. A favorable result had the effect of decreasing general anxiety, osteoporosis-specific worries and the perceived likelihood of developing osteoporosis. An unfavorable result was associated with smaller decreases or no significant changes in these ratings. As predicted, there was evidence of minimization as women who received an unfavorable result showed a decrease in their ratings of the seriousness of below-average bone density, and at the 3 mo follow-up had significantly lower seriousness ratings than women who received a high bone density result. The women reported more osteoporosis preventive behaviors after the scan
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)585-608
Number of pages24
JournalPsychology and Health
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1999


Dive into the research topics of 'Psychological and behavioural effects of bone density screening for osteoporosis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this