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Acceptance of disease and lifestyle modification after diagnosis among young adults with epilepsy

Authors Staniszewska A, Religioni U, Dąbrowska-Bender M

Received 4 November 2016

Accepted for publication 20 December 2016

Published 31 January 2017 Volume 2017:11 Pages 165—174


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Johnny Chen

Anna Staniszewska,1 Urszula Religioni,2 Marta Dąbrowska-Bender3

1Department of Experimental and Clinical Pharmacology, Medical University of Warsaw, 2Collegium of Socio-Economics, Warsaw School of Economics, 3Department of Public Health, Medical University of Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland

Aim: Assessment of factors affecting the degree of illness acceptance in patients with epilepsy and determination of whether the diagnosis of epilepsy influenced the functioning of this population group.
Materials and methods: The Acceptance of Illness Scale (AIS) and authors’ own questionnaire were used in this study. The study included 264 patients with epilepsy aged 20–40 years. The study was carried out during the period from June 2015 to June 2016. Participants were recruited through multiple channels, including online websites, a forum for people suffering from epilepsy, and from a neurological outpatient clinic in Warsaw.
Results: The mean value for overall rates of illness acceptance for all patients was 25.05±5.23, which indicated a mean level of illness acceptance of the patients. A significant correlation was observed between the results on AIS and the marital status of patients (P=0.04541). However, statistical analysis did not support the significant association between the illness acceptance and other socio-demographic factors and clinical aspects (P>0.05 in all cases). An analysis of the correlation between the level of illness acceptance and taking life decisions by the patients showed that the only statistically significant difference was the influence of an illness on the decision about marriage (P=0.032383).
The problem of illness acceptance is often addressed in scientific research. It seems to be difficult to attain the state of full illness acceptance, especially in a situation when a number of changes have to be made in a patient’s current life and everyday functioning. It can be argued that illness acceptance has a positive meaning because it entails benefits resulting from better mental and physical comfort of a patient. The time needed for the attainment of full illness acceptance is individual for every patient and also depends on many factors.

Keywords: epilepsy, acceptance of illness, lifestyle, young adults, AIS

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