Rorschach comprehensive system predictors of biopsychological distress in patients with chronic disease

Piero Porcelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Rorschach Comprehensive System (CS) scores of D, Adj.D, m, and SumY are thought to indicate feelings associated with stressful experiences. In this study, 92 patients with chronic inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) were assessed with the Rorschach CS, the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) for psychological distress, and standard biomedical measures for disease activity (DA) over a period of 6 months. Stress was defined as the combined assessment of the somatic (DA) and psychological (HADS) components by creating groups of patients with and without biopsychological distress. Using a cross-sectional study design, we could associate the CS variables of stress control (D, Adj.D, es, and SumY) and negative affect (DEPI) to poor somatic and psychological health status (effect size ranging from .37 to .49). Longitudinal, hierarchical regression analysis showed that baseline CS variables (particularly D <0 and higher SumY) explained a significant amount (9%) of the disease activity aggravation, and that they - particularly D and Adj.D - independently predicted biopsychological distress aggravation measured 6 months after the Rorschach administration and controlled for biomedical and sociodemographic factors (37% of shared variance). Confirming previous findings, this study showed that D/Adj.D and SumY were reliable, stable indicators of the stressful experience, considered as the joint combination of the psychological and the somatic components.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)143-171
Number of pages29
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2010


  • chronic disease
  • comprehensive system
  • diffuse shading
  • inanimate movement
  • stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


Dive into the research topics of 'Rorschach comprehensive system predictors of biopsychological distress in patients with chronic disease'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this