Effects of Perceived Loneliness in Endometriosis

Effects of Perceived Loneliness in Endometriosis

Perceived loneliness affects the quality of life of women with endometriosis.

Key Points



  • This finding underscores the importance of evaluating the patients’ perspectives about the disease.

What’s done here:

  • Researchers analyzed 435 women with endometriosis using the Endometriosis Health Profile questionnaire.

Key results:

  • Alexithymia only indirectly affects women's perceived health-related quality of life.
  • Perceived loneliness mediates the effect of the alexithymic experiences.


  • A self-report survey has potential method biases concerning the misunderstanding of the purposes of the measures as well as social-desirability bias.
  • The results are based on an online survey with unclear answering instructions.
  • The study only explored a few variables about the complexity of the relationship between endometriosis and women’s health-related quality of life. 
  • The study cannot draw any conclusions concerning a causal relationship between alexithymia and health-related quality of life. 

Lay Summary

Perceived loneliness directly affects quality of life, according to a new study conducted in women with endometriosis. It also plays a crucial role in mediating the effects of experiences that women find difficult to verbalize.

“It is possible that endometriosis patients’ difficulties in describing, understanding, and recognizing their emotions increased the feelings of being lonely, isolated, likely disbelieved and not understood, which in turn leads to pooper perceived endometriosis-related quality of life,” the researchers wrote in a report that they published in the journal Clinical Neuropsychiatry.

A better understanding of women’s experiences can ensure they are offered the right treatment and support to deal with their condition.

To study the possible link between difficulty in verbalizing emotions and health-related quality of life among women with endometriosis, and analyze the role of perceived loneliness, a team of researchers led by Dr. Valentina Boursier from the Department of Humanities at the University of Naples Federico II in Italy analyzed 435 women with endometriosis, ages 19 to 55 using the 30-item Endometriosis Health Profile questionnaire.

They found that the difficulty in verbalizing emotions, also known as alexithymia only indirectly affected the women's perceived health-related quality of life. It did so by mediating the effect of feelings of loneliness.

“The current study highlighted the pivotal role of perceived loneliness,” the authors concluded. “Women with endometriosis seem to largely suffer due to their ‘invisible disease’ that forces them into conditions of isolation and loneliness that dramatically impact their quality of life.”

Research Source: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/38106818/

Health-related quality of life Endometriosis Health Profile Loneliness Alexithymia


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