UBC Theses and Dissertations
The Effect of inflammatory bowel disease and growth retardation on the self-image of adolescents Marshall, Helga Adda
This study was undertaken to determine the effect of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), in general, and one of its manifestations, growth retardation, in particular, on the self-image of adolescents. The conceptualization of adolescent self-image as described by D. Offer (1981) was the basis for the study's framework. The psychological, social, sexual, familial and coping selves, further classified into 11 separate content areas, comprised the adolescent self-image. A descriptive-comparative design was used to describe the self-image of adolescents with IBD and to compare the similarities and differences in self-image among the IBD adolescents with and without growth retardation and their healthy peers. A convenience sampling method was used to obtain 24 IBD subjects between the ages of 12 and 20, eleven of whom had growth retardation. A normative sample of adolescents (N = 1385) was used by permission of D. Offer for purposes of comparison with the IBD subjects. Data were gathered using the Offer Self-image Questionnaire for adolescents. The adolescents with IBD did not differ remarkably from the norm in their perceptions of self although a tendency among the females to have concerns about their body image and sexual maturation was demonstrated. The IBD subgroup without growth retardation reported self-image perceptions that were superior to the norm and the growth retarded subgroup in almost every category. The IBD subgroup with growth retardation reported a disturbed self-image in a number of areas. The males revealed disturbances primarily in body image and secondarily in emotional harmony, and adaptability to stress in the immediate environment, family relations, and sexual maturation. The females revealed self-image disturbances in sexual maturation and body image. The findings of the study suggest that growth retardation in the IBD adolescent may have a negative effect on self-image. The findings may demonstrate a more notable and broader effect of growth retardation on self-image in the males with IBD than in the females.
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