Document Type



OBJECTIVE: To investigate the extent to which depressive symptomatology, anxiety, and marital adjustment mediate pain ratings in women suffering from dyspareunia.

METHOD: Seventy-six women with dyspareunia were administered the depression and anxiety scales of Derogatis's Brief Symptom Inventory and the McGill Pain Questionnaire. They also underwent a manual-visual gynecological examination, an ultrasound, and a colposcopy in an attempt to identify potential evidence and type of organicity.

RESULTS: Depressive symptomatology, anxiety, and marital adjustment together accounted for a significant amount of the variance in pain ratings, although only anxiety and marital adjustment were independent predictors of pain ratings in the entire group of women with dyspareunia. When multiple regression analyses were then applied to different diagnostic subgroups of dyspareunia, the independent predictors of pain rating varied depending on the findings from the gynecological examinations.

CONCLUSION: Affect and marital adjustment appear to be significant predictors of dyspareunic pain rating, although the independent contribution of psychosocial variables may vary depending on the presence and type of organic findings.


Affective disorders; Anxiety in women; Depression in women; Dyspareunia; Marital adjustment; Marital quality; Sexual disorders


Community-Based Research | Counseling Psychology | Health Psychology | Medicine and Health | Psychiatry and Psychology | Psychology


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Copyright Canadian Psychiatric Association, used with permission

Publisher Citation

Meana, M., Binik, I., Khalife, S., & Cohen, D. (1998). Affect and marital adjustment in women's rating of dyspareunic pain. The Canadian Journal of Psychiatry/La Revue canadienne de psychiatrie; The Canadian Journal of Psychiatry/La Revue canadienne de psychiatrie.

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