JCM, Vol. 12, Pages 3606: The Relationship between Body Image, Disability and Mental Health in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis

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JCM, Vol. 12, Pages 3606: The Relationship between Body Image, Disability and Mental Health in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis

Journal of Clinical Medicine doi: 10.3390/jcm12103606

Authors:
Viviana Lo Buono
Lilla Bonanno
Francesco Corallo
Davide Cardile
Giangaetano D’Aleo
Carmela Rifici
Edoardo Sessa
Angelo Quartarone
Maria Cristina De Cola

Background: Multiple sclerosis is a progressive degenerative disorder that frequently involves the development of physical and emotional changes, including loss of limb function or sensitivity, sexual dysfunction, and cognitive and mood alterations. It is likely that these alterations lead to changes in body aspects. However, knowledge about body image perception in multiple sclerosis is lacking. Purpose: The present study investigated the relationship between body image perception and its correlation with a disability, neuropsychiatric symptoms, and self-esteem. Methods: A total of 100 outpatients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis underwent neurological assessment using the Expanded Disability Status Scale. Participants also completed the Body Image Scale (BIS), Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (RSES), and Symptom Checklist-90-Revised (SCL-90-R). Results: We found a significant positive correlation between body image and disability (r = 0.21; p = 0.03), body image and self-esteem (r= −0.52; p < 0.001), body image and somatization (r = 0.44; p < 0.001), body image and depression (r = 0.57; p < 0.001), and body image and anxiety (r = 0.5; p < 0.001). Conclusions: The body is considered one of the main parts of a person’s identity. Dissatisfaction with one’s own body changes the general evaluation of the “self”. The body image construct has important health outcomes and should be studied more in patients with multiple sclerosis.

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