Positive expectations may speed recovery

Aug. 11, 2009 at 1:50 AM
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EDMONTON, Alberta, Aug. 11 (UPI) -- Canadian and Swedish researchers say whiplash recovery was not related to injury severity and patients with positive expectations had shortened recovery times.

Linda Carroll and Dejan Ozegovic of the University of Alberta in Edmonton looked at a cohort of more than 6,000 Canadian adults with traffic-related whiplash injuries. Carroll found those with positive outlooks toward their recovery recovered three times faster than those with less positive expectations.

Dejan Ozegovic looked at predictions around returning to work and found those with positive return-to-work assumptions felt they had "recovered" 42 percent faster than those who had more negative expectations.

Lena Holm, a researcher from Sweden who had worked at the University of Alberta, found study participants in Sweden who had low expectations of complete recovery were four times more likely to still feel symptoms six months after an injury.

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