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venous ulcers, spirituality, religion, quality of life



  1. Salome, Geraldo Magela PhD, RN
  2. de Almeida, Sergio Aguinaldo RN
  3. Ferreira, Lydia Masako MD, PhD


OBJECTIVE: The objective of the study was to evaluate the association of sociodemographic factors with hope for cure and levels of religiosity and spirituality in patients with venous leg ulcers (VLUs).


DESIGN: This was a primary, prospective, descriptive, analytical, clinical, nonrandomized study.


SETTING: The study was performed at a nursing care and education center of a university hospital in interior Minas Gerais, Brazil.


PATIENTS: A convenience sample of 50 adult patients with VLUs and Doppler ankle-brachial index ranging from 0.8 to 1.0 participated in the study. Patients with mixed ulcers, arterial ulcers, and diabetic foot ulcers were excluded from the study.


MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: A questionnaire assessing sociodemographic and clinical characteristics of patients, the Spirituality Self-rating Scale (SSRS), and the Herth Hope Index (HHI) were administered to all patients.


MAIN RESULTS: The mean SSRS score was 10.20, and the mean HHI was 25.5, corresponding to low levels of spirituality and moderate hope for cure, respectively. Patients aged between 50 and 59 years, men, nonsmokers, and those who were unemployed had the lowest mean SSRS scores. The lowest mean HHI values were reported by patients whose ulcers had exudate and odor, those aged 20 to 39 years, retired, and living with the wound for 1 year or less. Patients who had no religion or were not practicing a religion and those who considered living with an ulcer as a punishment reported low SSRS scores.


CONCLUSION: The results showed that most patients with VLUs had low levels of spirituality, did not perceive divine intervention in their daily life or practice religious activities such as prayer, and had moderate hope for cure.