Objectives: Personality traits appear as determinants of quality of life (QoL) in most chronic diseases. Type D personality is characterized by ineffective coping strategies that reduce QoL in patients with coronary heart disease. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether Type D personality also predicts QoL in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). In addition, gender differences in Type D personalities are explored.
Methods: The sample consisted of 153 PD patients (51.4% males; mean age 67.9 +/- 9.3 years). DS-14 was used to measure Type D personality, negative affectivity (NA) and social inhibition (SI). The Parkinson's Disease Quality of Life Questionnaire (PDQ-39) was used to assess QoL, and the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS) was used to assess functional status. The regression model consisted of disease severity, disease duration, age and DS-14 and its two scales (NA and SI).
Results: Type D is negatively associated with overall QoL in PD patients and most subscales of the PDQ-39. Type D explained emotional well-being in both genders but was significant in the models for stigma, cognition, and communication only in men. NA and SI played a less important role in women in comparison with men.
Conclusion: Type D personality is an important part of the QoL model in PD patients of both genders, especially in the NA scale. The gender differences suggest that male and female PD patients require different coping strategies.