Bailey_Wells_Manuscript_BRAT_revised_Final.doc

32 prospective predictors of health anxiety the main

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3.2 Prospective Predictors of Health Anxiety: The main analysis (Table 2) tested the independent prospective predictors of health anxiety at time 2. Multicollinearity was tested by examination of variance inflation factor (VIF) and tolerance statistics. After all predictors were entered, none appeared problematic, all tolerance values were above the recommended .2 (range .38–.91; Menard, 1995) and all VIF values well less than 10 (Cohen, Cohen, West, & Deacon, 2003; Myers, 1990). Using time 2 health anxiety (WI2) as the dependent variable, the WI1 was entered on step one to control for time 1 health anxiety and it explained 52% of the variance (p<.001). EPQ-R was entered on step two to control for neuroticism, this explained 0.1% of the variance and was non-significant. Step 3 controlled for cognitive variables, catastrophic misinterpretation and somatosensory amplification and this block explained 1% of the variance and was non-significant. Dysfunctional illness beliefs were entered at step 4 and contributed 2.7% of the variance, but this was also non-significant. Finally, on step 5 the
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Metacognition and Health Anxiety: A prospective Study.14 three metacognitive variables were entered as a block, and they explained 14% of the variance which was significant (p<.001). In the final overall equation three variables prospectively predicted health anxiety and made a unique and statistically significant contribution to symptoms at time 2. As expected health anxiety at Time 1 emerged as the strongest predictor of health anxiety (β= .45, p < . 001), the other two predictors were metacognitive variables; beliefs that thoughts are uncontrollable (β= .27, p < .005) and beliefs about biased thinking (β= .24, p < .005). Overall these findings show that specific health anxiety related metacognitions uniquely explained variance in health anxiety symptoms over time and their contribution was not explained by shared variance with illness beliefs, misinterpretations, neuroticism and somatosensory amplification. Indeed, these latter variables failed to emerge as prospective predictors of health anxiety at each step or in the final model. Although the regression revealed that metacognitive beliefs were positive predictors of health anxiety, which is consistent with a causal relationship between metacognition and the development of health anxiety, it does not rule out the possibility of reciprocal causation i.e. that health anxiety may also cause elevated dysfunctional metacognitions. To test this a further regression analysis was run. The dependent variable this time was metacognitive beliefs (MCQ-HA total) at time2. On step 1 we controlled for metacognitive beliefs at time 1 (MCQ-HA total) and this explained 43% of the variance in metacognitive beliefs at time 2, and was significant. On step two we entered WI at time 1 which explained an additional 0.9% of the variance in metacognitive beliefs at time 2 but was not significant. Time 1 metacognitive beliefs emerged as the only significant predictor (β= .58, p < .001). Overall these findings indicate that metacognitive beliefs prospectively predict health anxiety and variation in metacognition is not the consequence of health anxiety.
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Metacognition and Health Anxiety: A prospective Study.15
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