Issue N# 4 - 2003
HEAD AND NECK CANCER
A simple assessment of quality of life in head and neck cancer patients; what can it tell us?
Authors : H. S. Khalil, M. Feldman, M. W. Bridger (Plymouth)
Ref. : Rev Laryngol Otol Rhinol. 2003;124,4:211-214.
Article published in english
Downloadable PDF document english
Objective: A number of well validated quality of life (QoL) instruments are available. Head and neck cancer patients often find these exhaustive questionnaires too long or bothersome. The purpose of our study was to evaluate a patient self-reported very simple assessment of quality of life and to compare it with the well-validated European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) QoL questionnaire. Methods: A departmental simple questionnaire was designed consisting of 2 components: 1. A visual analogue scale; 2. A space for patients to enter up to 3 specific problems which prevent quality of life being better. These may be physical, emotional, social or practical problems. 112 patients attending the head and neck oncology clinic completed both questionnaires (half completed the simple questionnaire first and the other half the ERTOC questionnaire first). Results: There was a good correlation between the global health scores of the EORTC and the visual analogue scale of the simple questionnaire. There was poor correlation between specific domains in the EORTC questionnaire and the 3 comments mentioned by patients in the simple questionnaire. Conclusion: A simple patient assessment of quality of life can be used as a simple outcome tool in head and neck cancer data bases when specific details are not required.
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