Use of coping strategies in MND/ALS:association with demographic and disease-related characteristics

Schlüter, Daniela K and Holland, David and Mills, Roger and McDermott, Christopher and Williams, Timothy and Young, Carolyn and TONiC study group (2019) Use of coping strategies in MND/ALS:association with demographic and disease-related characteristics. Acta Neurologica Scandinavica, 140 (2). pp. 131-139. ISSN 0001-6314

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Objective Understanding the use of coping strategies and which factors are associated with strategy utilization might help clinical staff anticipate which coping strategies individuals are more likely to utilize. In this study, we assess coping strategy use in the motor neuron disease (MND, also known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis [ALS]) population and examine associations of demographic and disease variables with individual coping strategies. Participants and Methods A total of 233 participants with MND/ALS were recruited into the ongoing Trajectories of Outcomes in Neurological Conditions study from MND clinics across the United Kingdom. Participants completed a questionnaire pack collecting data on demographics and a range of patient‐reported measures including the Coping Orientations to Problems Experienced scale. Associations between demographic and clinical characteristics and coping strategies were examined by simple and multiple ordinal logistic regression. Results The most commonly used strategy was Acceptance, followed by Active Coping, Planning and Positive Re‐interpretation and Growth. The least used strategies were Substance Use, Turning to Religion and Denial. Ten out of the fifteen strategies showed statistically significant associations with demographic and clinical characteristics. Most markedly, females were found to utilize many strategies more than males, namely Restraint, Seeking Instrumental Social Support, Seeking Emotional Social Support, Focus on and Venting of Emotions, Behavioural Disengagement and Mental Disengagement. Conclusion Clinical staff should be aware that coping strategy use is associated with several demographic and disease characteristics. Targeted advice on coping may improve coping capacity and facilitate psychosocial adjustment.

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Journal Article
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Acta Neurologica Scandinavica
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This is the peer reviewed version of the following article:Schlüter, DK, Holland, DP, Mills, RJ, McDermott, CJ, Williams, TL, Young, CA; on behalf of the TONiC study group. Use of coping strategies in MND/ALS: Association with demographic and disease‐related characteristics. Acta Neurol Scand. 2019; 140 (2): 131– 139. which has been published in final form at This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance With Wiley Terms and Conditions for self-archiving.
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23 May 2019 10:40
Last Modified:
21 Sep 2023 02:37