Introduction: Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a chronic, progressive neuroimmunological disease which affects a large number of patients worldwide. Gradual patient adjustment is an important means to improve Quality of Life (QoL), as it is estimated from the patients themselves that it is lower than of healthy people. Despite the significant health effects of the disease, better adaptation means better QoL. Religiosity, as a factor, is reinforced in chronic diseases and under this perspective it could give meaning to life and contribute to the patient’s management of the disease.
Aim: The aim of the present study was to investigate the QoL of patients with Multiple Sclerosis who visit outpatient clinics of public hospitals and to find out the factors that affect it. In particular, the effects of religiosity on QoL, as well as on the parameters of physical and mental health were sought.
Methods: Data collection lasted from June 2018 to October 2018. The sample was constituted of 72 patients with Multiple Sclerosis who visited the outpatient clinics of the general hospital of Nikaia “Saint Panteleimon” and the general hospital of Athens “Evangelismos”, and 32 patients who responded to an electronic questionnaire. The QoL was assessed with the Greek version of Multiple Sclerosis Quality of Life-54 (MSQOL-54) questionnaire and the estimation of religiosity with the validated Centrality of Religiosity Scale-15 (CRS-15).
Results: At the level of 0.05, religiosity (p <0.001) correlated positively with QoL, physical (0.014) and mental health (0.029) of people with MS, especially women (p = 0.021). The educational level was positively correlated with QoL (0.038).
Conclusions: The results of the study showed that women had a greater religious involvement, religiosity improved QoL, physical and mental health. Over time, mental health levels decreased, while the educational level contributed to a better QoL. The finding that women had a lower physical health score than men (p=0.046), contradicts findings from international research and needs further study.
Key-words: Multiple Sclerosis, Quality of life, Religiosity