Measuring coping in Multiple Sclerosis: The Coping Index-MS. / Young, Carolyn A; MIlls, RJ; Langdon, Dawn; Rog, D; Sharrack, B; Kalra, S; Majeed, T; Footit, D; Harrower, T; Nicholas, R; Ford, Helen; Woolmore, John; Johnstone, C; Thorpe, J; Paling, D; Ellis, C; Hanneman, C. O. ; Tennant, Alan.

In: Multiple Sclerosis, 2022.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

  • Carolyn A Young
  • RJ MIlls
  • Dawn Langdon
  • D Rog
  • B Sharrack
  • S Kalra
  • T Majeed
  • D Footit
  • T Harrower
  • R Nicholas
  • Helen Ford
  • John Woolmore
  • C Johnstone
  • J Thorpe
  • D Paling
  • C Ellis
  • C. O. Hanneman
  • Alan Tennant


Background: Coping in MS refers to cognitive and behavioural efforts to manage stresses imposed by the illness. Existing generic and disease-specific coping scales do not meet modern guidelines for scale development, and/or cannot produce interval-level metrics to allow for change scores.
Objective: To develop a brief patient-reported outcome measure for coping in MS, capable of interval-level measurement.
Methods: Qualitative work in 43 people with MS lead to a draft scale which was administered to 5,747 participants, with longitudinal collection in 2,290. A calibration sample of 1,000 subjects split into development and validation sets was used to generate three scales consistent with Rasch model expectations.
Results: The total Coping Index-MS (CI-MS-T), CI-MS-Internal (CI-MS-I) and CI-MS-External (CI-MS-E) cover total, internal and externally-focused coping. All three scales are capable of interval-level measurement.
Trajectory analysis of 9,000 questionnaires showed two trajectories in CI-MS-T: Group 1 showed a low level of coping with slight decline over 40 months while Group 2 had a better and stable level of coping due to improving CI-MS-Internal which compensated for the deteriorating CI-MS-External over time. CI-MS-Total<30 identified group membership at baseline.
Conclusion: The CI-MS-Total, CI-MS-Internal and CI-MS-External, comprising 20 items, provide interval-level measurement and are free-for-use in not-for-profit settings.

Original languageEnglish
JournalMultiple Sclerosis
Publication statusPublished - 2022

ID: 45766516