Lege Artis Medicinae

[QUALITY OF LIFE MEASUREMENTS IN BRONCHIAL ASTHMA]

MÉSZÁROS Ágnes

APRIL 21, 2006

Lege Artis Medicinae - 2006;16(04)

[Bronchial asthma is a chronic disease with symptoms that significantly influence the daily life of patients causing difficulties in almost every area of life. The author reviews his own results and those published by others on the impact of asthma on the quality of life. The patients' quality of life was assessed using the general quality of life questionnaire EuroQol as well as the disease-specific St. George's Respiratory Questionnaire. Asthma was classified by severity according to GINA, an international classification system. The results of the study provide numerical proof of the concept that due to their disease, patients with asthma have lower quality of life indices than the non-asthmatic population. On examining the effect of age, sex and respiratory functions as factors that influence quality of life, the results indicate that the quality of life of women with asthma is lower compared to men, which is a warning that more attention should be paid on the care of women with bronchial asthma. Since there is only a moderate correlation between respiratory functions and quality of life (r=0.37), the extent of respiratory tract obstruction assessed by objective measurements is not indicative of how the patient is doing. Despite of having normal values, some patients are commonly anxious, are subjects to many real or pseudo-attacks, which in turn leads to greater drug consumption, and judge their state more severe in the symptom diary than actually it is. The findings indicate that beside considering clinical state, symptoms and laboratory results, asthma care should place greater emphasis on the patients’ self-judged quality of life and their own view on their disease.]

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