Staying Hopeful Can Lead to Better Recovery

A study published recently in Rehabilitation Psychology examined the association between differnt helping factors and functional rehabilitation outcomes following acute medical rehabilitation. Using a longitudinal design and correlational and regression analyses, the authors studied 174 adults who were participating in inpatient rehabilitation for acute spinal cord dysfunction, stroke, amputation, or orthopedic surgery recovery. All participants completed the Hope Scale, Positive and Negative Affect Schedule, and Functional Independence Measure (FIM) during the first days of their inpatient stay, and then were contacted 3 months after discharge to complete the Craig Hospital Assessment and Reporting Technique (CHART) and FIM. Results showed that hope accounted for a statistically significant amount of the variance in the prediction of functional role participation at 3 months postdischarge (as measured by the CHART) above and beyond the variance accounted for by demographic and severity variables. In contrast, positive affect was not found to contribute to the prediction of functional role participation, and neither hope nor positive affect contributed to the prediction of functional skill level (FIM). The results indicate that positive psychological variables present during the rehabilitation stay, such as hopefulness, may contribute to the prediction of functional outcomes after discharge in rehabilitation populations. These findings suggest that incorporating interventions that enhance hope and build on the individual's psychological strengths may be useful to improve participation outcomes following acute medical rehabilitation

For the abstract.

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