Date of Submission


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)



Department Chair

Robert A DiTomasso, PhD, ABPP, Chair, Department of Psychology

First Advisor

Stephanie H Felgoise, PhD, ABPP, Chairperson

Second Advisor

Robert A DiTomasso, PhD, ABPP

Third Advisor

Victoria L Vetter, MD, MPH


Long QT Syndrome (LQTS) is a cardiac arrhythmia disorder that affects 1 in 2,000 individuals and is a precursor to various cardiac events, including sudden cardiac arrest (Schwartz et al., 2016). As a precaution, individuals with all types of LQTS have been advised to modify their lifestyles to avoid triggers, including limiting physical activity (PA). Nonadherence to treatment recommendations could result in devastating outcomes. The purpose of the study was to explore characteristics pertaining to adherence and nonadherence to PA recommendations, including the quality of the physician/patient relationship and illness beliefs among adults with LQTS. An Internet survey was completed by 91 adults with LQTS who were recruited through various social media and medical group venues. The findings indicated that agreement on treatment goal between participants and cardiologists accounted for 3% and 4% of the variances, respectively, of perceptions of personal and treatment control over LQTS. Positive perceptions of personal and treatment control significantly predicted adherence. These results can be explained by the self-regulatory model, which describes the connection between health behaviors and illness perceptions. The findings generate many opportunities for future directions with the LQTS population and other medical populations, including research, intervention development, and advocacy.

Included in

Psychology Commons