Quality of life and social support in patients with multiple sclerosis
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Zakład Higieny i Epidemiologii, Gdański Uniwersytet Medyczny
Katarzyna Rosiak   

Gdański Uniwersytet Medyczny, Zakład Higieny i Epidemiologii, Dębinki 7, budynek 15, II piętro, 80-211, Gdańsk, ul. Beniowskiego 68/70/33, 80-355 Gdańsk, Polska
Submission date: 2016-01-05
Final revision date: 2016-07-28
Acceptance date: 2016-08-17
Online publication date: 2017-10-29
Publication date: 2017-10-29
Psychiatr Pol 2017;51(5):923–935
Quality of life and needforsocial support in persons diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) are to a large extent determined by the degree of their disability. The aim of the study was to analyze an association between specific forms of MS, subjectively perceived quality of life and social support.

The study included subjects with established diagnosis of MS, treated at rehabilitation centers, hospitals and in a home setting, as well as the members of patient organizations. After being informed about objectives of the study, type of included tasks and way to complete them, each participant was handed out a set of questionnaires: Berlin Social Support Scales (Łuszczyńska, Kowalska, Schwarzer, Schulz), Quality of Life Questionnaire (WHOQOLBREF), as well as a survey developed specifically for the purposes of this project. The results were subjected to statistical analysis with STATA 12 package.

The study included a total of 110 persons (67 women and 43 men). Quality of life overall, as well in physical, psychological, social relationships and environmental health domains, turned out to be particularly important in patients with primary-progressive MS. Irrespective of MS type, social support overall did not play a significant role on univariate analysis. However, subgroup analysis according to sex demonstrated that men with MS received social support four times less often than women.

Quality of life in individuals with primary-progressive MS is significantly lower than in patients presenting with other types of this disease. Men with MS are more likely to present with worse scores for social support overall. They are less likely both to acknowledge the need for support and to realize the availability of support they actually need.