Evid Based Nurs 3:20 doi:10.1136/ebn.3.1.20
  • Treatment

A coping skills group and peer telephone support had similar effects on role performance, adaptability, and wellbeing in patients with multiple sclerosis

 QUESTION: For patients with multiple sclerosis (MS), is a coping skills group intervention more effective than telephone peer support for improving or maintaining long term psychosocial role performance, adaptability, and wellbeing?


Randomised {allocation not concealed}*, unblinded, controlled trial with 2 years of follow up.


Boston, Massachusetts, USA


Patients were recruited from an MS clinic, newspapers, newsletters, and referrals. Inclusion criteria were neurologist confirmed diagnosis of MS and Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) score 1–8.5 (minimal neurological problems to requirement of a wheelchair). 136 patients were randomised and 132 patients (mean age 43 y, 74% women, mean duration of MS 8 y, 42% with progressive MS, mean income US$45 000) were assessed at 2 years.


Randomisation was stratified by level of disability and course of disease. The coping skills group met for weekly …

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