Relevant associations between alexithymia and health-literacy in persons with psoriasis
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionJournal of dermatological treatment (Print). 2020, . 10.1080/09546634.2020.1756204
Objective: To explore possible associations between alexithymia and health literacy (HL) in persons with psoriasis. Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional study, including 825 persons with moderate to severe psoriasis, using the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20), and the Health Literacy Questionnaire (HLQ). Descriptive statistics compare HL means between alexithymic and not alexithymic participants. Associations between alexithymia and HL are analyzed using a linear multiple regression model. Results: 26 % of the participants were characterized as alexithymic, and 26.8% had borderline alexithymia. Higher alexithymia scores were associated with lower education, biological medicines, and more comorbidities, together with lower self-efficacy. The health literacy (HL) domains with the strongest associations with alexithymia were those focusing on managing and getting support for health, as well as the ability to find health information. Conclusion:. A more elevated alexithymia score is associated with lower health literacy. Further studies of these associations may contribute to a more comprehensive perspective of psoriasis. To know a patient's alexithymia level and HL needs may guide health care personnel’s understanding of possible associations between health status, clinical presentation, behaviour, and response to treatment.