Cancer history and other personal factors affect quality of life in patients with hepatitis C.

Health and quality of life outcomes

PubMedID: 15960844

Olson SH, Iyer S, Scott J, Erez O, Samuel S, Markovits T, Schwartz M, Toro C, Gambarin-Gelwan M, Kurtz RC. Cancer history and other personal factors affect quality of life in patients with hepatitis C. Health Qual Life Outcomes. 2005;339.
BACKGROUND
Although patients with chronic hepatitis C (CHC) have been found to have reduced quality of life, little is known about how other characteristics affect their quality of life. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of other characteristics, including history of cancer, on quality of life in patients with CHC.

METHODS
One hundred forty patients from clinics at three hospitals in New York City completed a detailed epidemiologic interview about demographic and lifestyle characteristics and the SF-36 measuring health-related quality of life. We compared results from our patients to normative data using t-tests of differences between means. We used multivariate analyses to determine other personal and health-related factors associated with quality of life outcomes.

RESULTS
Compared to normative data, these patients had reduced quality of life, particularly on physical functioning. The summary Physical Component Score (PCS) was 45.4 +/- 10.6 and the Mental Component Score (MCS) was 48.2 +/- 11.1, vs norms of 50 +/- 10.0; p-values were < 0.0001 and < 0.05, respectively. In multivariate analyses, the PCS was significantly lower among those with cancer history, > or = 2 other chronic conditions, less education, low physical activity, and higher alanine aminotransferase (ALT) levels. Cancer was more important for men, while other chronic conditions were more important for women. On the MCS, history of depression, low physical activity, alcohol use, and female gender were independently associated with poorer scores.

CONCLUSION
Several health and lifestyle factors independently influence quality of life in CHC patients. Different factors are important for men and women.