Spirituality, denial, and dispositional optimism as related to psychological adjustment in myocardial infarction patients on a coronary care unit

Date of Award




Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

First Committee Member

Kent Burnett - Committee Chair


This study examined the relationship between spirituality and psychological adjustment in myocardial infarction (MI) patients during the acute phase of recovery. Other factors associated with health outcomes, such as optimism, denial and social support, were also examined. 26 MI patients participated in the study within the first seven days of hospitalization. The mean age of the sample was 57, with a range of 32 to 88 years. Variables were examined using Pearson-product moment correlations and multiple regression analyses. No significant associations were found between spirituality and depression or anxiety. There were significant relationships between coping and adjustment. Denial of impact and dispositional optimism were significantly inversely related to both depression and anxiety. Spiritual and existential well-being were significantly directly related to dispositional optimism; religious well-being was not. Results are discussed in terms of coping strategies that may be useful for MI patients during hospitalization.


Psychology, Behavioral; Psychology, Clinical

Link to Full Text


Link to Full Text