• Filipino;
  • lupus;
  • psychosocial attributes


Aim:  To describe various domains of psychosocial attributes among Filipino patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).

Methods:  This is a cross-sectional survey of SLE patients seen at a tertiary centre in Manila, Philippines in 2005. All patients completed self-administered questionnaires: Beck Depression Inventory II (BDI-II), Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI), and Optimism and Pessimism Scales. Spearman rank correlation coefficient was used to determine association between levels of depression and anxiety.

Results:  A total of 275 female SLE patients with mean age of 32.57 years ± 12.26 SD (range 19–68) completed the questionnaires. Various levels of depression, anxiety as well as optimism/pessimism were disclosed by patients. There was a significant association between degree of depression and anxiety, P = 0.000, but not with age at time of survey (P = 0.099) nor disease duration (P = 0.584). Areas of concern in the interpersonal domain included ‘irritability’, and ‘having none or lost interest in sex.’ In the socio-cultural domain, prevalent indicators of ‘indecisiveness’, ‘worthlessness’, and ‘self-criticism’ ranged from 42.7% to 47.7%. Descriptors of situational domain included guilt and punishment feelings, loss of energy, concentration difficulty, and tiredness/fatigue; notably 15.3% harboured suicidal thoughts.

Conclusions:  This survey among Filipino SLE patients further identified areas of concern in the various interpersonal, socio-cultural and situational domains which may significantly impact on patients’ and caregivers’ adjustment to the illness, and may thus influence the approach as well as overall response to management of these patients.