Antecedents of Coping with the Disease in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis: A Qualitative Content Analysis

Document Type : Original article


1 Department of Nursing, School of Nursing and Paramedical, Jahrom University of Medical Sciences, Jahrom, Iran

2 Nursing and Midwifery Care Research Center, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

3 Behavioral Sciences Research Center (BSRC), Nursing Faculty, Baqiyatallah University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran


Background: Due to many physical and mental disorders that occur in multiple sclerosis patients, identifying the factors affecting coping based on the experiences of patients using qualitative study is essential to improve their quality of life. This study was conducted to explore the antecedents of coping with the disease in patients with multiple sclerosis.Methods: This is a qualitative study conducted on 11 patients with multiple sclerosis in 2015 in Tehran, Iran. These patients were selected based on purposive sampling. Data were collected using semi-structured and in-depth interviews and coded. These data were analyzed using the conventional content analysis. The rigor of qualitative data using the criteria proposed by Guba and Lincoln were assessed. Results: Five main categories were revealed: (1) social support, (2) lenience, (3) reliance on faith, (4) knowledge of multiple sclerosis and modeling, and (5) economic and environmental situation. Each category had several distinct sub-categories.Conclusions: The results of this study showed that coping with multiple sclerosis is a complex, multidimensional and contextual concept that is affected by various factors in relation to the context of Iran. The findings of the study can provide the healthcare professionals with deeper recognition and understanding of these antecedents to improve successful coping in Iranian patients suffering from multiple sclerosis.