Original article| Volume 45, 102387, October 2020

Evaluation of emotional intelligence (EI) in neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (NMOSD) patients compared to healthy individuals


      • The aim of this study was to compare Emotional Intelligence (EI) between NMOSD patients and healthy subjects.
      • The total EI score and some of its subscales were significantly lower among NMOSD patients.
      • The only difference observed in EI scores between AQP4-IgG positive and AQP4-IgG negative patients was Self-Actualization.



      Neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (NMOSD) is known as an autoimmune astrocytopathic disorder involving central nervous system (CNS). The aim of this study was to compare Emotional Intelligence (EI) score between NMOSD patients and healthy individuals, and to find out the possible effect of this disease on EI.


      A total of 45 NMOSD participants and 48 healthy individuals were enrolled in this study. Demographic information (e.g., gender and age) of all participants as well as their level of education, and data on the patients’ duration of disease were collected. EI of each participant was assessed using Persian version of Emotional Quotient inventory (EQ-i) questionnaire.


      The mean total EI score was significantly different between the participants and controls (322±36.7 vs 338±31.5, p value<0.03). Compared to controls, patients had a poor performance in 4 of 15 EI subscales including emotional self-awareness (21.29±3.6 vs 22.85±3, p value<0.03), optimism (22.4±4 vs 24.1±3.1, p value<0.03), self-regard (22.7±4.6 vs 24.5±3.4, p value<0.04), and impulse control (16.9±6.5 vs 19.5±5.5, p value<0.05). No difference was found between anti-aquaporin-4 antibody (AQP4-IgG) positive and AQP4-IgG negative patients regarding EI score or its subscale scores, except for self-actualization (p value<0.05).


      Our study showed that EI could be regarded as a tool for understanding emotions, thoughts, and behavior of NMOSD patients. It was implied that taking therapeutic steps could improve the performance of NMOSD patients with EI impairment in social life.


      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'


      Subscribe to Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect


        • Wingerchuk D.M.
        • et al.
        International consensus diagnostic criteria for neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders.
        Neurology. 2015; 85: 177-189
        • Moore P.
        • et al.
        Cognitive and psychiatric comorbidities in neuromyelitis optica.
        J. Neurol. Sci. 2016; 360: 4-9
        • Meng H.
        • et al.
        Cognitive dysfunction in adult patients with neuromyelitis optica: a systematic review and meta-analysis.
        J. Neurol. 2017; 264: 1549-1558
        • Blanc F.
        • et al.
        Cognitive functions in neuromyelitis optica.
        Arch. Neurol. 2008; 65: 84-88
        • Eizaguirre M.B.
        • et al.
        Cognitive impairment in neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders: What do we know?.
        Mult. Scler. Relat. Disord. 2017; 18: 225-229
        • Oertel F.C.
        • et al.
        Cognitive impairment in neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders: a review of clinical and neuroradiological features.
        Front. Neurol. 2019; 10: 608
        • Kim S.H.
        • et al.
        Multimodal magnetic resonance imaging in relation to cognitive impairment in neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder.
        Sci. Rep. 2017; 7: 9180
        • Cho E.B.
        • et al.
        White matter network disruption and cognitive dysfunction in neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder.
        Front. Neurol. 2018; 9: 1104
        • Blanc F.
        • et al.
        White matter atrophy and cognitive dysfunctions in neuromyelitis optica.
        PLoS One. 2012; 7: e33878
        • Nakazawa K.
        • et al.
        Resilience and depression/anxiety symptoms in multiple sclerosis and neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder.
        Mult. Scler. Relat. Disord. 2018; 25: 309-315
        • Shi Z.
        • et al.
        Factors that impact health-related quality of life in neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder: anxiety, disability, fatigue and depression.
        J. Neuroimmunol. 2016; 293: 54-58
        • Chanson J.B.
        • et al.
        Evaluation of health-related quality of life, fatigue and depression in neuromyelitis optica.
        Eur. J. Neurol. 2011; 18: 836-841
        • Cardona J.F.
        • et al.
        The impact of neuromyelitis optica on the recognition of emotional facial expressions: a preliminary report.
        Soc. Neurosci. 2014; 9: 633-638
      1. Salovey, P. and J.D. Mayer, Emotional Intelligence. Imagination, cognition and personality, 1990.9 (3): p. 185-211.

        • O'Connor P.J.
        • et al.
        The measurement of emotional intelligence: a critical review of the literature and recommendations for researchers and practitioners.
        Front. Psychol. 2019; 10: 1116
        • Norman K.
        • Combs-Richardson R.
        Emotional intelligence and social skills: necessary components of hands-on learning in science classes.
        J. Elem. Sci. Educ. 2001; 13: 1
        • Ghajarzadeh M.
        • et al.
        Emotional Intelligence (EI) of patients with Multiple Sclerosis (MS).Iran.
        J. Public Health. 2014; 43: 1550-1556
        • Ebadi Z.
        • Saeedi R.
        • Hashemi S.N.
        • Gheini M.R.
        • Sahraian M.A.
        • Naser Moghadasi A.
        Evaluation of types of psychological disorders in patients with neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (NMOSD).
        Mult. Scler. Relat. Disord. 2020; 42102128
        • Joseph D.L.
        • Newman D.A.
        Emotional intelligence: an integrative meta-analysis and cascading model.
        J. Appl. Psychol. 2010; 95: 54-78
        • Samuei R.
        Standardization of BarOn Emotional Intelligence Test.
        Tehran: Sina Research Institution on behavioral sciences, 2003
        • Bar-On R.
        The Bar-On model of emotional-social intelligence.
        Psicothema. 2006; 18 Suppl: 13-25
        • Koven N.S.
        • et al.
        Regional gray matter correlates of perceived emotional intelligence.
        Soc. Cogn. Affect. Neurosci. 2011; 6: 582-590
        • Killgore W.D.
        • et al.
        Gray matter correlates of Trait and Ability models of emotional intelligence.
        Neuroreport. 2012; 23: 551-555
        • Wojtalik J.A.
        • Eack S.M.
        • Keshavan M.S.
        Structural neurobiological correlates of Mayer-Salovery-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test performance in early course schizophrenia.
        Prog. Neuropsychopharmacol. Biol. Psychiatry. 2013; 40: 207-212
        • Takeuchi H.
        • et al.
        White matter structures associated with emotional intelligence: evidence from diffusion tensor imaging.
        Hum. Brain Mapp. 2013; 34: 1025-1034
        • Liu Y.
        • et al.
        Structural MRI substrates of cognitive impairment in neuromyelitis optica.
        Neurology. 2015; 85: 1491-1499
        • Gutierrez-Cobo M.J.
        • Cabello R.
        • Fernandez-Berrocal P.
        The relationship between emotional intelligence and cool and hot cognitive processes: a systematic review.
        Front. Behav. Neurosci. 2016; 10: 101
        • Pardeller S.
        • et al.
        Emotional Intelligence and cognitive abilities - associations and sex differences.
        Psychol. Health Med. 2017; 22: 1001-1010
        • Moore P.
        • et al.
        PO155 Comparison of cognitive functioning between matched samples of aqp-4 antibody positive and mog antibody nmo patients with healthy controls.
        J. Neurol., Neurosurg. Psychiatry. 2017; 88 (A54-A54)
        • Zhang N.
        • et al.
        Cognitive impairment in Chinese neuromyelitis optica.
        Mult. Scler. 2015; 21: 1839-1846
        • Owji M.
        • Sahraian M.A.
        • Bidadian M.
        • et al.
        Evaluating the relationship between emotional intelligence and cognitive disorders in patients with Multiple Sclerosis.
        Iran J. Neurol. 2018; 17: 78-81