Kathryn E. Gustafson, PhD


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Assistant Professor in Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
Clinical Associate in the Department of Pediatrics
Department / Division:
Psychiatry / Child & Fam Mental Health & Dev Neuro
DUMC 2739
2424 Erwin Road, Suite 504
Durham, NC 27710
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  • PhD, Clinical Psychology, Ohio University, 1988
  • Clinical Psychology-Child and Pediatric Specialty, Medical University of South Carolina, 1987-1988
  • Pediatric Psychology, Duke University Medical Center, 1988-1989
Clinical Interests:
Clinical child and pediatric psychology; learning disabilities; attentional disorders; developmental problems; psychological assessment of infants, children, adolescents and young adults with medical, learning, attentional and behavioral problems; illness coping; parenting
Research Interests:
My research efforts have focused on psychological adjustment in children, adolescents, adults and families who are confronting the challenges of chronic illnesses such as cystic fibrosis, sickle cell disease, and very low birth weight. In collaboration with Dr. Robert Thompson, our research utilizes a transactional model of stress and coping with chronic illness and developmental problems, and examines relevant illness and demographic variables, and psychosocial mediational processes. We have focused on the analyses of change in psychological adjustment and hypothesized mediational processes and inter-relationship over time. In 1996-97 we have also continued our longitudinal study of the developmental outcome of infants with sickle cell disease and of the psychosocial outcome of the infants and their mothers. We are also collaborating with the Pediatric Neuro-Oncology team in examining the inter-relationship of biomedical and psychosocial outcome. Future plans are to continue the longitudinal analyses, to expand the model to include other psychosocial mediational processes, and to examine other illness populations.