On the personal facets of quality of life in chronic neurological disorders

Anna R. Giovagnoli, Antonio Martins Da Silva, Antonio Federico, Ferdinando Cornelio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Quality of life (QOL) is an important clinical endpoint, but it remarkably varies in patients with similar neurological conditions. This study explored the role of spirituality (i.e., the complex of personal transcendence, connectedness, purpose, and values) in determining QOL in chronic neurological disorders.~Seventy-two patients with epilepsy, brain tumours or ischemic or immune-mediate brain damage compiled inventories for QOL (WHOQOL 100), spirituality (Spiritual, Religious and Personal Beliefs, WHOSRPB), depression (Beck Depression Inventory, BDI), anxiety (State-Trait Anxiety Inventory, STAI), and cognitive self-efficacy (Multiple Ability Self-Report Questionnaire, MASQ) and underwent neuropsychological testing. With respect to 45 healthy controls, the patients reported worse QOL, with no difference between the four patient subgroups. Factor analyses of the WHOSRPB, STAI, and BDI scores and of the MASQ and neuropsychological test scores yielded four (Personal Meaning, Inner Energy, Awe and Openness, Mood) and three factors (Control Functions, Cognition, Memory), respectively. Mood, Cognition, Inner Energy, schooling, and subjective health status correlated with the WHOQOL scores, but at regression analysis only Mood and Inner Energy predicted QOL. This suggests that spirituality, as a personal dimension distinct from mood, contributes to determine QOL. A multidimensional assessment of QOL, including personal facets, may explain differences between patients with chronic neurological disorders.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)155-163
Number of pages9
JournalBehavioural Neurology
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - 2009


  • Brain lesions
  • Chronic neurological disorders
  • Cognitive functions
  • Mood
  • Quality of life
  • Spirituality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neurology


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