Cochrane COVID-19 Study Register
Costabile 2020

COVID-19 pandemic and mental distress in Multiple Sclerosis: implications for clinical management

  1. Study Type
  2. Observational
  1. Study Aim
  2. Other
  1. Study Design
  2. Cross-sectional
  1. Intervention Assignment
  2. Not Applicable

COVID-19 pandemic and mental distress in Multiple Sclerosis: implications for clinical management

Costabile T, Carotenuto A, Lavorgna L, Borriello G, Moiola L, Inglese M, Petruzzo M, Trojsi F, Ianniello A, Nozzolillo A, Cellerino M, Boffa G, Rosa L, Servillo G, Moccia M, Bonavita S, Filippi M, Lanzillo R, Brescia Morra V, Petracca M
Journal article
Report Results
BACKGROUND: in multiple sclerosis (MS), disease-related factors and dysfunctional coping might favour the development of mental distress induced by COVID-19 containment measures. METHODS: we explored the relationship between mental distress, disability and coping strategies in the Italian MS population under lockdown. Structural equation modeling (SEM) was applied to information collected via web-survey to identify modifiable factors that could account for mental distress. RESULTS: 845 subjects (497 MS and 348 controls) were included in the study. MS patients showed higher scores than controls for depression (p=0.005), but not for anxiety, emotional dyscontrol or sleep disturbances. The SEM explained 74% of the variance observed in depression score. Within the model, three latent factors were characterized from measured variables: motor disability and cognitive dysfunction contributed to disability (β=0.509 and β=0.836, p<0.001); positive attitude and exercise contributed to active attitude (β=0.386 and β=0.297, p<0.001); avoidance, social support and watching TV contributed to passive attitude (β=0.301, β=0.243 and β=0.212, p<0.001). As per the relationship between latent factors and their influence on depression, disability contributed to passive attitude (β=0.855, p<0.001) while both passive and active attitude significantly influenced depression (β=0.729 and β=-0.456, p<0.001). CONCLUSION: as practical implication of our model, favoring exercise would enhance active attitude and its positive impact on mental well-being while, at the same time, reducing the negative impact of disability on depression, representing a valuable tool to face COVID-19 related mental distress