A resilience group training program for people with multiple sclerosis: Results of a pilot single-blind randomized controlled trial and nested qualitative study

Ambra Mara Giovannetti, Rui Quintas, Irene Tramacere, Andrea Giordano, Paolo Confalonieri, Michele Messmer Uccelli, Alessandra Solari, Kenneth Ian Pakenham, Andrea Martinuzzi
2020 PLoS ONE  
An Australian case series study demonstrated the effectiveness of the REsilience and Activities for every DaY for people with multiple sclerosis (READY for MS), a resilience group training program based on Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, in improving quality of life in people with MS. This study aimed to evaluate the feasibility and acceptability of the Italian READY for MS program, and to preliminary assess its efficacy when compared to an active control intervention (group relaxation).
more » ... up relaxation). Single-blind phase II randomized controlled trial (RCT) and nested qualitative study (ISRCTN registration number: 38971970). Health-related quality of life (primary study outcome), mood, resilience, psychological flexibility and its protective factors were measured at baseline, after seven, 12 and 24 weeks. READY participants completed the purpose-built satisfaction questionnaire after 12 weeks. After trial completion, the control group also received READY. One-to-one participant interviews were conducted within three months of finishing the READY groups. Four intervention groups were conducted with 39 participants (20 READY, 19 relaxation). Two patients (READY) withdrew before beginning the intervention due to unexpected work commitments. Feasibility and acceptability of READY were good, with high participant engagement and satisfaction. No statistical effects of READY were detected vs relaxation. Thirty participants were interviewed (18 READY; 12 relaxation + READY). Content data analysis revealed seven overarching themes: "Attitudes towards participation"; "Perceptions of program composition"; "Program impacts on life domains"; "Program active elements"; "Program improvement trajectories"; "Program differences and similarities"; "Suggested READY improvements". READY was well accepted by MS patients with varied socio-demographic and clinical characteristics. Qualitative (but not quantitative) data provided evidence in favour of READY. Our findings will inform methodological and intervention refinements for the multi-centre RCT that will follow.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0231380 pmid:32271833 fatcat:zu3icermcfahdaeal2jui4fi3q