Aim: This study examines the relation between Sense of Coherence (SOC) as defined in the theory of Salutogenesis and patient reported health outcomes in Multiple Sclerosis (MS) patients.
Methods: The first phase of the study was the validation of the Slovenian versions of the measure of SOC called the Sense of Coherence (13-item Orientation to Life) Questionnaire and the measure of HRQOL, a specific Health Related Quality of Life (HRQOL) questionnaire, called the Multiple Sclerosis Quality of Life-54 Instrument (MSQOL-54). It was hypothesized that the Slovenian versions of the instruments would fulfill the standard psychometric criteria, and that a stronger SOC would be associated with better MS specific and general patient reported health status. A total of 134 patients were surveyed, though the measures of demographics, illness, SOC and HRQOL at baseline, and the measure of SOC one year later.
Results: The Slovenian instruments successfully passed the psychometric evaluation. As expected, after controlling for demographic and illness variables, SOC emerged as a significant and independent, predictor of patient reported health in MS patients, the effect was most visible in the mental domains.
Conclusion: This was the first study to examine the impact of SOC on patient reported health, assessed by a MS specific HRQOL instrument, and it provides the basics for further investigation of SOC in MS.