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Physical and Mental Health Factors In Elderly Patients With Multiple Sclerosis
Introduction: The quality of life of patients with multiple sclerosis is influenced by many factors. The purpose of the present study is to identify the impact of individual demographic, clinical, and social characteristics, as well as of patients’ habits, on the physical and mental component of health-related quality of life of patients with multiple sclerosis after the age of fifty. Methods: The cross-sectional study included 130 patients with multiple sclerosis, aged between 50 and 73 years. They were assessed with the Multiple Sclerosis Quality of Life-54 questionnaire (Physical Health Composite Score and Mental Health Composite Score), per their body mass index, and through a questionnaire on the characteristic symptoms; the Kolmogorov-Smirnov test, Spearman’s rank correlation coefficient, Mann-Whitney test, analysis of variance – ANOVA, the Kruskal–Wallis test, and linear regression analysis were all used. Results: The Physical Health Composite Score was affected by patient’s age (R² = 0,075, p = 0,002), body mass index (R² = 0,034, p = 0,035), and the type of settlement patients live in (R² = 0,032, p = 0,042). The Mental Health Composite Score was affected by patient’s age (R² = 0,084, p = 0,001) and alcohol consumption (R² = 0,039, p = 0,024). Discussion and conclusions: Differences in the influence of various factors on the quality of life of patients with multiple sclerosis after the age of 50 highlight the need to identify and follow up on the influence of individual factors and groups of factors on the quality of life of older adult patients with multiple sclerosis. To achieve and maintain a high level of quality of life in elderly adult patients with multiple sclerosis, the quality of life should be regularly monitored and supported by patient-tailored professional help.