Development and Validation of the MS Resiliency Scale

Thursday, June 2, 2016
Exhibit Hall
Elizabeth S Gromisch, Ph.D. , Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT
Jessica H Sloan, BA , Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology, Yeshiva University, Bronx, NY
Vance Zemon, Ph.D. , Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology, Yeshiva University, Bronx, NY
Tuula Tyry, PhD , Dignity Health, St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center, Phoenix, AZ
Laura C Schairer, Ph.D. , VA NY Harbor Healthcare System, Manhattan, NY
Stacey Snyder, Ph.D. , Mount Sinai Hospital, New York, NY
Frederick W Foley, Ph.D. , Holy Name Medical Center, Teaneck, NJ

Background: Resiliency is the most common pattern of adjustment, in which an individual is able to keep a relatively healthy and stable level of psychological and physical functioning after a traumatic experience. Factors such as hope, adaptive coping styles, physical activities, social support, and emotional awareness have been associated with resiliency. For some individuals, having a major medical diagnosis such as multiple sclerosis (MS) may be a traumatic experience. While several measures of resiliency have been developed, few measures focus on chronic illness and none are MS-specific.

Objectives: This study aimed to develop and validate the MS Resiliency Scale (MSRS), a 75-item questionnaire with five proposed subscales that incorporate the different aspects involved in resiliency: 1) Hopefulness and Optimism, 2) Physical Well-Being, 3) Cognitive Processes, 4) Emotional Management, and 5) Support System.

Methods: Participants (N = 1038) were individuals with MS who were recruited through the North American Research Committee on Multiple Sclerosis (NARCOMS) who completed the survey online; 106 participants were removed from the analyses due to missing data. The Resiliency Scale and Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale were used to establish convergent and divergent validity. Principal component analysis was run to determine the subscales.

Results: Using a promax rotation with Kaiser normalization, and suppressing items with coefficients below 0.3, five subscales emerged that accounted for 42.75% of the variance. Each subscale had high reliability (internal consistency): Emotional and Cognitive Strategies (14 items; α = .947), Physical Well-Being (3 items; α = .765), Information Seeking (2 items; α = .730), Social Support (5 items; α = .813), and Spirituality (2 items; α = .859). Four of the subscales were weakly to moderately and significantly correlated with each other (r range: .106-.413). The exception was the Spirituality and Physical Well-Being subscales, which was nearly significant (r = .061, p = .068). The total score was positively correlated with the Resiliency Scale (r = .637, p < .0005), and negatively correlated with HADS Depression (r = -.724, p < .0005) and Anxiety (r = -.561, p < .0005).

Conclusions: The 26-item MSRS provides clinicians with valuable information on patients’ adjustment to their MS.