, Volume 12, Issue 8, pp 1089-1097

Quality of life of patients with type I diabetes mellitus

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Abstract

The objective of this study was to assess health related quality of life (QOL) in patients with type I diabetes mellitus (DMT1) and to compare their QOL with the QOL of persons of comparable age in the general population. Furthermore we wanted to investigate which factors mostly influence QOL. In a Dutch cohort of 281 patients with DMT1 QOL was assessed using two generic instruments: the EuroQol and the RAND-36. We performed regression analyses to investigate relationships between several demographic (e.g. sex, age, marital status) and diabetes-specific variables (e.g. HbA1c, frequency of insulin injection, presence of acute and chronic complications) and QOL. The Spearman rank correlations between RAND-36 domains and EuroQol were analysed. RAND-36 results showed, for almost all domains, a QOL comparable with persons of comparable age in the general population. In contrast the QOL measured with the EuroQol was lower for subjects with DMT1. Hyperglycaemic complaints and macrovascular complications had a profound negative influence on QOL. Most correlations between the RAND-36 results and the EuroQol results corresponded with our expectations. Longitudinal data and comparison with results of several diabetes-specific questionnaires should help to establish which instrument might be most appropriate to measure QOL in patients with DMT1.