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Discriminant validity of the University of Washington quality of life questionnaire in the Brazilian context.

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Discriminant validity of the University of Washington quality of life questionnaire in the Brazilian context.

Rev Bras Epidemiol. 2012 Dec;15(4):781-789

Authors: Andrade FP, Biazevic MG, Toporcov TN, Togni J, Carvalho MB, Antunes JL

Abstract
OBJECTIVE: To assess discriminant validity of the University of Washington quality of life questionnaire for patients with head and neck cancer, and to identify socio-demographic factors that may modify its results. METHODS: We interviewed 47 patients with oral and oropharyngeal cancer in pre-surgical stage in a hospital located in the South region of the city of São Paulo, in 2007, and 141 patients without cancer, matched by sex and age in a ratio of three to one, who were attending outpatient clinics of the same hospital in 2008. The results for the two groups were compared by the Student t test. Poisson regression models to evaluate factors that may modify quality of life scores among patients without cancer. RESULTS: The overall quality of life score was significantly higher (p < 0.001) for patients without cancer (91.1) than for patients with cancer (80.6). Similar observations were made for eight of the twelve quality of life domains included in the questionnaire (pain, appearance, swallowing, chewing, speech, shoulder, taste, and anxiety). As factors that may modify the quality of life scores, we identified family income (which impacted in recreation, p = 0.017, and shoulder function, p = 0.049), schooling (in anxiety, p = 0.003), sex (in shoulder function, p = 0.038) and toothache (in chewing, p = 0.015). CONCLUSIONS: The questionnaire has discriminant validity, because its scores are specifically more reduced among cancer patients. The use of the questionnaire for monitoring the treatment of cancer patients is reinforced, and the assessment of factors that may impact in its results is recommended.

PMID: 23515774 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

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