The influence of psychological factors on Health-Related Quality of Life after stroke: a systematic review

Authors

  • Maria L. van Mierlo,

    1. Brain Center Rudolf Magnus, Center of Excellence for Rehabilitation Medicine, University Medical Center Utrecht and De Hoogstraat Rehabilitation, Utrecht, The Netherlands
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Carin Schröder,

    1. Brain Center Rudolf Magnus, Center of Excellence for Rehabilitation Medicine, University Medical Center Utrecht and De Hoogstraat Rehabilitation, Utrecht, The Netherlands
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Caroline M. van Heugten,

    1. Department of Psychiatry and Neuropsychology, School for Mental Health and Neuroscience, Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands
    2. Department of Neuropsychology and Psychopharmacology, Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Marcel W. M. Post,

    1. Brain Center Rudolf Magnus, Center of Excellence for Rehabilitation Medicine, University Medical Center Utrecht and De Hoogstraat Rehabilitation, Utrecht, The Netherlands
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Paul L. M. de Kort,

    1. Department of Neurology, St Elisabeth Hospital, Tilburg, The Netherlands
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Johanna M. A. Visser-Meily

    Corresponding author
    1. Brain Center Rudolf Magnus, Center of Excellence for Rehabilitation Medicine, University Medical Center Utrecht and De Hoogstraat Rehabilitation, Utrecht, The Netherlands
    • Correspondence: Johanna M. A. Visser-Meily, University Medical Center Utrecht, Department of Rehabilitation and Sports Medicine, P.O. Box 85500, 3508 GA Utrecht, The Netherlands.

      E-mail: j.m.a.visser-meily@umcutrecht.nl

    Search for more papers by this author

  • Conflicts of interest: None declared.
  • Funding: This research project is funded by the VSB foundation and the Dutch Heart Foundation, and co-ordinated by ZonMw (Dutch Organization for Health Research and Development).

Abstract

Background and purpose

Many stroke patients experience problems with health-related quality of life, but much of the variance of health-related quality of life after stroke remains unexplained. Health-related quality of life may be influenced by psychological factors, as these factors reflect the way people approach situations and react to stressful situations. The aim of this study was to systematically examine the relationship between psychological factors and health-related quality of life after stroke.

Summary of review

A systematic literature search was conducted in online databases PubMed, Embase, PsycINFO, and CINAHL in November 2011. A total of nine studies were included. Personality (i.e. problems of temperament and personality functions and neuroticism) was moderately negatively associated with health-related quality of life (r = 0·26–0·49). Coping (i.e. situational and personal adaptation), internal locus of control, self-worth (i.e. self-esteem and self-efficacy), and hope and optimism were moderately positively associated with health-related quality of life (r = 0·026–0·81). No evidence was found for an association between extraversion and health-related quality of life.

Conclusions

There is still a paucity of studies on psychological determinants of poststroke health-related quality of life. The reviewed studies supported the importance of psychological factors, but further research is needed to supplement the available evidence and to examine how psychological factors can be modified to improve health-related quality of life, and at what moment after the stroke these interventions should be given.

Ancillary