Stability and change in patterns of coping with Parkinson's disease

Int J Aging Hum Dev. 2002;55(3):207-31. doi: 10.2190/UA78-79LB-4GCF-8MJT.


This study examined how Parkinson's disease patients cope with disease-related stressors over time. Of interest was whether patterns of coping would support a dispositional model of coping (i.e., stability) or a contextual model of coping (i.e., change). The influence of stability and change in coping on mental and physical health outcomes was also examined. As expected, results showed that as the disease progressed, severity and distress increased and quality of life decreased. There was no change overall in the symptoms perceived as most stressful or the coping strategies employed to manage them. However, stability within individuals was associated with poorer mental and physical outcomes, whereas change in coping strategies was associated with more optimal outcomes. Evidence supporting both models of coping was found, and the potential applications of these findings for psychosocial intervention are discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living / psychology
  • Adaptation, Psychological*
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Dementia / psychology
  • Disease Progression
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Status Schedule
  • Middle Aged
  • Parkinson Disease / psychology*
  • Problem Solving
  • Quality of Life / psychology
  • Sick Role*
  • Social Environment
  • Social Support