Psychological stress in nurses assisting Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis patients: a statistical analysis based on Non-Parametric Combination test

Angela Alibrandi, Massimiliano Giacalone, Agata Zirilli


We aimed to evaluate the psychological, emotional and relational burden of nurses who provide assistance to patients affected by Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). A survey was conducted by administering a questionnaire, the “Health Professions Stress and Coping Scale”, which proposes some potentially stressful work situations. The questionnaire was administered to 105 nurses working in hospitals where there is a ward for patients suffering from ALS. We used the "Non-Parametric Combination Test", a multivariate methodology based on permutation solution, widely applicable in various research contexts. Firstly, we investigated the areas of stress; then, the attention was focused on the different coping strategies adopted by respondent nurses within each stress area. The analyses were stratified according to different confounding factors, in order to control their potential effect. The results show the presence of an average level of stress, regardless of gender and educational status. Furthermore, there are significant differences in stress levels in subjects classified according to the ward in which they operate and a positive correlation between higher stress levels and the number of service years was found. In the future this study could also be of interest to nurses working in wards with potentially stressful situations.


Psychological stress in Nurses; Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis; Health Professions Stress and Coping Scale; Non Parametric Combination procedure.

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