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Graft and donor denial in heart transplant recipients
Am J Psychiatry 1986;143:1159-1161.
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Abstract

Eighteen of 20 survivors of a heart transplant used denial as a coping mechanism. In seven of the subjects, denial was expressed toward the graft, in five it was toward the donor, and in six it was toward both. Other feelings expressed at the time of discharge were euphoria, gratitude, curiosity, ambivalence, guilt, anxiety, and a feeling of a change in body image. The author suggests that denial serves a protective and adaptive function in heart transplant recipients.

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