, Volume 19, Issue 5, pp 687-700,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.
Date: 27 Mar 2010

Neck pain patients’ preference scores for their current health

Abstract

Purpose

To elicit neck pain (NP) patients’ preference scores for their current health, and investigate the association between their scores and NP disability.

Methods

Rating scale scores (RSs) and standard gamble scores (SGs) for current health were elicited from chronic NP patients (n = 104) and patients with NP following a motor vehicle accident (n = 116). Patients were stratified into Von Korff Pain Grades: Grade I (low-intensity pain, few activity limitations); Grade II (high-intensity pain, few activity limitations); Grade III (pain with high disability levels, moderate activity limitations); and Grade IV (pain with high disability levels, several activity limitations). Multivariable regression quantified the association between preference scores and NP disability.

Results

Mean SGs and RSs were as follows: Grade I patients: 0.81, 0.76; Grade II: 0.70, 0.60; Grade III: 0.64, 0.44; Grade IV: 0.57, 0.39. The association between preference scores and NP disability depended on type of NP and preference-elicitation method. Chronic NP patients’ scores were more strongly associated with depressive symptoms than with NP disability. In both samples, NP disability explained little more than random variance in SGs, and up to 51% of variance in RSs.

Conclusion

Health-related quality-of-life is considerably diminished in NP patients. Depressive symptoms and preference-elicitation methods influence preference scores that NP patients assign to their health.