To investigate the perceived social support systems’, and depression’s effects on attitudes regarding coping strategies for the disease in patients with epilepsy.
This cross-sectional study was conducted on 182 epileptic patients who applied to the Neurology Polyclinics of the Faculty of Medicine at Erciyes University, Kayseri, Turkey between November 2011 and November 2012. As data collection tools, we used the Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support Systems, Beck Depression Inventory, and the Assessment Scale for Coping Attitudes.
We found that epileptic patients most frequently employed emotion-oriented coping strategies. Among the emotion-oriented coping strategies, religious coping ranked first, positive reinterpretation and growth came second, while using instrumental social support, which was one of the problem-oriented coping strategies, ranked third. The most frequently used non-functional coping methods were “focus on and venting of emotions”. The most influential variables on coping strategies of epileptic patients were age, gender, educational level, family structure, type of seizures, and the interference of the disease in communication. We found a negatively significant correlation among the scores of depression and emotion-oriented coping strategies, dysfunctional coping strategies, and problem-based coping strategies, while there was a positive correlation found between dysfunctional coping strategies and emotion-oriented coping strategies.
The most influential variables on the coping strategies of epileptic patients were age, gender, educational level, family structure, type of seizures, and the interference of the disease in communication.