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Acta Neurol Scand. 2016 May;133(5):338-45. doi: 10.1111/ane.12465. Epub 2015 Jul 20.

Illness perception, treatment beliefs, self-esteem, and self-efficacy as correlates of self-management in multiple sclerosis.

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University School of Physical Education, Poznań, Poland.



Self-management of a disease is considered one of the most important factors affecting the treatment outcome. The research on the correlates of self-management in multiple sclerosis (MS) is limited. The aim of this study was to determine if personal factors, such as illness perception, treatment beliefs, self-esteem and self-efficacy, are correlates of self-management in MS.


This cross-sectional study included 210 patients with MS who completed Multiple Sclerosis Self-Management Scale - Revised, Brief Illness Perception Questionnaire, Treatment Beliefs Scale, Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale, and Generalized Self-Efficacy Scale. The patients were recruited from a MS rehabilitation clinic. Demographic data and illness-related problems of the study participants were collected with a self-report survey. Correlation and regression analyses were performed to determine associations between variables.


Four factors: age at the time of the study (β = 0.14, P = 0.032), timeline (β = 0.16, P = 0.018), treatment control (β = 0.17, P = 0.022), and general self-efficacy (β = 0.19, P = 0.014) turned out to be the significant correlates of self-management in MS. The model including these variables explained 25% of variance in self-management in MS.


Personal factors, such as general self-efficacy, perception of treatment control and realistic MS timeline perspective, are more salient correlates of self-management in MS than the objective clinical variables, such as the severity, type, and duration of MS.


illness perception; multiple sclerosis; self-efficacy; self-esteem; self-management; treatment beliefs

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