The aim of this study is to systematically review quantitative studies exploring associations of social relationships with mental health and wellbeing in persons with physical disabilities. The objective is to summarise a complex and heterogeneous body of empirical research on the association of different social relationship constructs with mental health and wellbeing in physical disability and to highlight conceptual and methodological deficiencies in the field of research. The literature search included original articles published in English between January 1, 1995 and May 31, 2016. Data was extracted on study and participants’ characteristics, independent and dependent variables, used measures and effects sizes of associations between social relationships and mental health or wellbeing. A narrative review was performed to synthesise findings along the constructs social support, social networks, negative social interactions, family functioning and relationship quality. Of the 63 included studies, 47 were cross-sectional and 16 longitudinal.
BMC Public Health (2017) 17:414