A psychoeducation program for stress management and psychosocial problems in multiple sclerosis.
Seki Oz, Hilal
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Background: Multiple Sclerosis (MS) patients should cope effectively with problems of life and with problems originating from the disease. This is important because it affects the course of the disease, psychiatric morbidity, and quality of life. Objective: This study was carried out as an intervention design with a control group to assess the effects of psychoeducation on MS patients' ways of coping with stress, psychiatric symptoms, and qualities of life. Subjects and methods: A total of 80 MS patients affiliated with the MS Association of Turkey were included and randomly assigned into intervention and control groups. An 8-week psychoeducation program was offered to the intervention group, whereas the control group was not given any treatment during the same period. Data were collected using a Descriptive Information Form, the Ways of Coping Inventory, the Brief Symptom Inventory, and the MS Quality of Life-54 scale. Results: Based on the study, among the ways of coping with stress, problem-focused approach increased, whereas the emotional-focused approach decreased statistically significantly in the intervention group. Among the psychiatric symptoms, the levels of anxiety, depression, and somatization decreased. However, there was no significant change in the negative self-concept and hostility symptoms. The total quality-of-life scores increased significantly (P < 0.05). In the intervention group, these effects continued in the three-month-follow-up measurement. The control group showed no statistically significant change in the same parameters during the same periods. It is recommended that group psychoeducation programs should be carried out extensively in order for MS patients to cope with stress effectively and improve their mental health and quality of life.
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