Psychological aspects of post-operative hospital infections
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Chair of Psychology, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Poland
Chair of Surgery, Faculty of Medical Sciences, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Poland
Submission date: 2010-05-04
Acceptance date: 2010-06-30
Online publication date: 2012-12-04
Publication date: 2023-03-13
Corresponding author
Izabela Sebastyańska-Targowska
Katedra Psychologii, Wydział Nauk Społecznych, Uniwersytet Warmińsko-Mazurski, ul. Głowackiego 17, 10-447 Olsztyn, Poland; e-mail:
Pol. Ann. Med. 2010;17(1):129-135
Introduction. Post-operative hospital infections (POI) are conditions whose specific courses strongly determine patients’ psychological conditions, potentially leading to the exacerbation of the pathomechanism and the prevention of effective treatment. Aim. The aim of this article was to present the specificity of psychological functioning of patients suffering from POI. The objective is both theoretical and practical due to the possibility of utilizing theoretical assumptions to improve the cooperation with patients suffering from infections, and, consequently, to improve the global healing process. Discussion. This analysis focuses on the correlation between the biological aspects of the infection process and those psychological aspects emerging as a result of pathological biological changes occurring in the body of an infected person. It is based on the recognition of two mutually complementing concepts concerning a human being: the holistic concept and the concept of biopsychosocial unity. The former assumes a harmonious integration of body, mind and soul. The latter recognizes the mutual connections between body, mind and social functioning. This article attempts to extrapolate the assumptions and study results concerning the functioning of a human being dealing with a disease understood as a difficult, threatening situation, to the functioning of patients dealing with POI. Conclusions. The mechanism explaining the biological-psychological correlations in the course of POI requires further studies involving the empirical level. Additionally, in order to achieve a comprehensive picture of psychological aspects of POI, research needs to be extended and to include medical staff.
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