Prostate carcinoma (PC) is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in men. Treatments for localized PC are associated with side effects including sexual dysfunction, which has been linked to decrements in health-related quality of life and elevated distress levels. In this study, we examined the relationship between 2 personality traits, interpersonal sensitivity and lack of sociability, assessed by the Inventory of Interpersonal Problems (IIP; Pilkonis, Kim, Proietti, & Barkham, 1996) and recovery of sexual functioning in 121 men (M age = 60.6 years) recently treated with radical prostatectomy. Interpersonal sensitivity refers to the predisposition to perceive and elicit criticism and rejection from others; lack of sociability refers to chronic difficulties taking the initiative in interpersonal situations. After adjusting for relevant covariates, interpersonal sensitivity, but not sociability, was significantly associated with lower levels of sexual functioning. Patient-physician communication and partner perceived social support were explored as mediators of this relationship. Although interpersonal sensitivity was significantly associated with both poorer patient-physician communication and lower levels of partner support, the results did not support mediation. This study provides preliminary evidence that certain IIP-assessed interpersonal styles may complicate the recovery of sexual functioning after surgical treatment for PC.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Psychology
- Psychiatry and Mental health
- Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis