Date of Conferral







Amy E. Sickel


Millions of individuals suffer disability or death from immune-based inflammatory diseases. If psychiatric disorders could be empirically linked to the prediction of immune-based inflammatory diseases, there would be a basis for promoting disease prevention measures for individuals diagnosed with one of four psychiatric disorders. Psychoneuroimmunology provided the theoretical base for understanding emotionally induced medical disease development. In this quantitative study, a parallel archival research design was used to investigate the degree to which generalized anxiety disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, major depression recurrent, and dysthymic disorder predicted the presence of atherosclerosis, cardiovascular heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, cancer, and type II diabetes. There were 1,209 electronic medical records of adult patients obtained through purposive stratified sampling. A secondary data analysis was employed using descriptive cross tabulation, chi-square test of independence, and multinomial logistic regression. The findings revealed major depression recurrent was a statistically significant predictor for atherosclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, type II diabetes and cancer. Generalized anxiety disorder was a statistically significant predictor for cancer. The results can promote positive social change by providing information that could be used to develop assessment plans that identity individuals who are at risk of developing the comorbid diseases. The prevention programs could effectively be used to minimize the subsequent development of inflammatory diseases, which in turn could decrease the onset of the medical diseases among individuals with psychiatric disorders.