The association of personality traits with poststroke fatigue in daily life: An exploratory experience sampling method and cross-sectional study

Ela Lazeron-Savu, Bert Lenaert, Rudolf Ponds, Caroline van Heugten

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Fatigue is a frequently occurring and persistent symptom after stroke. Many biological, psychosocial, and behavioural factors are associated with poststroke fatigue, but research into associations with personality traits is relatively sparse. In this study, we explored whether personality traits were related to poststroke fatigue measured with conventional fatigue questionnaires as well as experience sampling methodology (ESM). Twenty-four individuals with stroke completed 10 daily questionnaires about momentary (here-and-now) fatigue for six consecutive days using the mHealth ESM application PsyMateTM. Further, they completed questionnaires assessing personality (NEO-FFI and LOR-T) and fatigue (FSS). Results showed that higher extraversion (β = -.44, SE =.12, p =.001; 95% CI = -.67-.19) and optimism (β = -.18, SE =.06, p =.007; 95% CI = -.30-.05) were associated with lower momentary fatigue. No association was found between neuroticism and momentary fatigue, but higher neuroticism (r = 0.531, p =.008, 95% CI =.160-.759; r =.574, p =.003, 95% CI =.245-.767) was associated with higher scores on the retrospective FSS scales. We conclude that personality traits differentially influence poststroke fatigue, but this also depends on the way fatigue is measured (with retrospective or with momentary measures). When functional gains are not in line with expected progress during the rehabilitation treatment of fatigue, it may be appropriate to take into account how person characteristics are related to momentary fatigue.
Original languageEnglish
JournalNeuropsychological rehabilitation
Early online date2022
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2022


  • Fatigue
  • experience sampling method
  • fatigue severity scale
  • personality traits
  • stroke

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