The psychosocial difficulties in brain disorders that explain short term changes in health outcomes

Alarcos Cieza, Cristina Bostan, Jose Luis Ayuso-Mateos, Cornelia Oberhauser, Jerome Bickenbach, Alberto Raggi, Matilde Leonardi, Eduard Vieta, Somnath Chatterji

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: This study identifies a set of psychosocial difficulties that are associated with short term changes in health outcomes across a heterogeneous set of brain disorders, neurological and psychiatric.Methods: Longitudinal observational study over approximately 12 weeks with three time points of assessment and 741 patients with bipolar disorders, depression, migraine, multiple sclerosis, parkinson's disease, stroke and traumatic brain injury. The data on disability was collected with the checklist of the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health. The selected health outcomes were the Short Form 36 and the World Health Organization Disability Assessment Schedule. Multilevel models for change were applied controlling for age, gender and disease severity.Results: The psychosocial difficulties that explain the variability and change over time of the selected health outcomes were energy and drive, sleep, and emotional functions, and a broad range of activities and participation domains, such as solving problems, conversation, areas of mobility and self-care, relationships, community life and recreation and leisure.Conclusions: Our findings are of interest to researchers and clinicians for interventions and health systems planning as they show that in addition to difficulties that are diagnostic criteria of these disorders, there are other difficulties that explain small changes in health outcomes over short periods of time.

Original languageEnglish
Article number78
JournalBMC Psychiatry
Publication statusPublished - Mar 11 2013


  • Disability
  • Neurological disorders
  • Psychiatric disorders
  • Psychosocial

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Medicine(all)


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