Introduction: Religious faith and spirituality often seem to affect physical and psychological functioning of patients with chronic diseases.
Aim: To investigate the relationship between religiosity/spirituality of coronary patients with anxiety and depression which may be experienced during their hospitalization.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted involving 172 patients (23 female and 149 male) with coronary artery disease, who were hospitalized in a general hospital of Attica region with an acute coronary syndrome diagnosis. HADS scale was used for the investigation of hospital anxiety and depression and the Belief and Values Scale was used to evaluate the patients’ religious faith and spirituality.
Results: Moderate levels of religiosity/spirituality and no to moderate levels of anxiety and depression were found in coronary patients. No statistically significant correlations were found between the HADS subscales and the Beliefs and Values Scale (p> 0.001), although individuals who have experienced strong spiritual experiences, experienced less anxiety and depression in hospital. There were found statistically significant correlations (p <0.001) with gender, religious beliefs, patients’ age with Belief and Values Scale. There were also statistically significant correlations (p<0.001) of HADS subscales with family status, age, smoking habits, stress and medication.
Conclusion: Highly religious coronary patients are less likely to experience anxiety and depression during hospitalization, though confounders seem to interfere and make it difficult to interpret this relationship. Further research is required in order to explore the impact of religiosity on psychological distress of hospitalized coronary patients.
Key words: Anxiety, coronary disease, depression, hospital, religiosity, spirituality