Iranian Journal of Public Health 2017. 46(5):677-681.

Emotional Intelligence in Patients with Spinal Cord Injury (SCI)


Background: Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) is a devastating situation.  Spinal Cord Injury affects functional, psychological and socioeconomic aspects of patients' lives. The ability to accomplish and explicate the one’s own and other’s feelings and emotions to spread over appropriate information for confirming thoughts and actions is defined as emotional intelligence (EI). The goal of this study was to evaluate depression and EI in SCI patients in comparison with healthy subjects.

Methods: One-hundred-ten patients with SCI and 80 healthy subjects between Aug 2014 and Aug 2015 were enrolled. The study was conducted in Imam Hospital, Tehran, Iran. All participants were asked to fill valid and reliable Persian version Emotional Quotient inventory (EQ-i) and Beck Depression Inventory (BDI). All data were analyzed using SPSS. Data were presented as Mean±SD for continuous or frequencies for categorical variables. Continuous variables compared by means of independent sample t-test. P-values less than 0.05 were considered as significant.

Results: Mean age of patients was 28.7 and mean age of controls was 30.2 yr. Spinal cord injury in 20 (18.3%) were at cervical level, in 83 (75.4%) were thoracic and in 7 (6.3%) were lumbar. Mean values of independence, stress tolerance, self-actualization, emotional Self-Awareness, reality testing, Impulse Control, flexibility, responsibility, and assertiveness were significantly different between cases and controls. Mean values of stress tolerance, optimism, self-regard, and responsibility were significantly different between three groups with different injury level. Most scales were not significantly different between male and female cases.

Conclusion: Emotional intelligence should be considered in SCI cases as their physical and psychological health is affected by their illness.

Keywords: SCI, Emotional intelligence, Injury level

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