Behavioural medicine: Edited by Mohan Isaac and Winfried RiefRecent research in stress, coping and women's healthRao, KiranAuthor Information Department of Mental Health and Social Psychology, National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS), Bangalore, Karnataka, India Correspondence to Kiran Rao, Department of Mental Health and Social Psychology, National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS), Hosur Road, Post Box No. 29, Bangalore 560029, Karnataka, India Tel: +91 80 2699 5195; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Current Opinion in Psychiatry: March 2009 - Volume 22 - Issue 2 - p 188-193 doi: 10.1097/YCO.0b013e328320794a Buy Metrics Abstract Purpose of review To highlight recent publications in the area of stress and coping, with specific reference to women's physical health status. Recent findings The transactional model of stress and coping continues to be the mainstay of research in this area. Several longitudinal studies have demonstrated that stress appraisal and resultant coping responses affect health outcome and health-related quality of life in women. In addition to problem-focused coping, women often use distraction methods, seeking social support and faith or religious coping. Psychological interventions in chronic medical conditions need to move beyond education and incorporate more cognitive behavioral components, at the same time addressing women's specific needs. Summary Coping behaviors in response to the negative threat appraisal of a chronic or severe medical illness serve to reduce psychological distress. However, it is still not clear how they impact at the physiological level. In addition, coping responses, which enhance positive effects and promote health-related quality of life, merit greater attention from researchers. There is a need for more gender comparative research to improve health outcomes in men and women. © 2009 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.