Friday, February 13, 2009

Health-Related Quality of Life for MS Patients

What do you think of when you consider “quality of life”? Do end-of-life issues come to mind? How about disability or an inability to enjoy life? Or, what about something as simple as holding your grandchild? This is the first post in a series of Quality of Life topics.

When I think of quality of life, I picture having the ability to do the things I wish to do. Maybe that’s enjoying a day going to the movies without getting fatigued, or being able to remain gainfully employed, or even just being able to contribute to the family’s needs. To do so, I choose to foster personal strengths, develop coping strategies, gain information and knowledge, while cultivating a positive outlook and the ability to choose joy. These things are not always easy, multiple sclerosis or not.

Consider Health-Related Quality of Life (HRQoL) which is important to patients and should be one of the primary objectives in the management of all chronic diseases, including MS. Regardless of the disease, the patient can cope and live a more productive life if HRQoL is maintained. For an excellent primer on HRQoL, see Measuring Health-Related Quality of Life in the Annals of Internal Medicine (15 April 1993, 118/8: 622-629).

HRQoL is a multidimensional concept that includes an individual’s perception of their general well-being and the level of role-fulfillment across a range of different physical, psychosocial, and symptom-related phenomenon. Four aspects to quality of life include clinical health, role-performance, adaptability, and well-being. The major factors contributing to quality of life for the patient are ability to perform daily activities, level of well-being, satisfaction with life, and the impact of disease-related symptoms.

Read this post in its entirety:

Quality of Life for MS Patients: Is it Health-Related?


  1. First off, WOWSERS on the blog look! If you did it a while ago, I guess I just gave away how much I've "gotten out" lately. I'm blog hopping now, tho, and love your look. :-)

    For the clinical trial we have to fill out this never-ending, multi-page MS related QoL questionnaire. It's multiple choice, however, so you don't get to really expound on why your answer to "Does your MS keep you from going out with your friends?" by telling them the answer is "no" because you have no friends and therefor it's really lack of friends that keeps me from going out with friends.

    They have to have some way of measuring how the MS patient perceives the effectiveness of their treatment, tho, I guess, so the QoL questionnaire (done repeatedly over time) is sort of a way to track that.

  2. I agree with your post, I do believe your quality is affected by your attitude.

  3. I choose joy...much of the time. And I find when I "choose" joy, it tends to follow me.