Quality of Life Research

, Volume 20, Issue 5, pp 665–674 | Cite as

Race and gender associations between obesity and nine health-related quality-of-life measures

  • Tanya G. K. Bentley
  • Mari Palta
  • Adam J. Paulsen
  • Dasha Cherepanov
  • Nancy Cross Dunham
  • David Feeny
  • Robert M. Kaplan
  • Dennis G. Fryback
Article

Abstract

Purpose

To assess how health-related quality of life (HRQoL) varies by body mass index (BMI) category among gender and racial subgroups using nine HRQoL measures.

Methods

Among 3,710 US adults, we evaluated self-reported height, weight, and HRQoL that was measured by six indexes (EQ-5D; HUI2; HUI3; SF-6D; QWB-SA; HALex) and three summary measures (theta; PCS; MCS). Mean HRQoL was estimated by weighted regression for normal, overweight, and obese subgroups (BMI: 18.5–24.9 kg/m2; 25–29.9; and 30–50).

Results

HRQoL was significantly lower (P < 0.0001) with increasing BMI category except for MCS. Obese individuals were 5.3 units lower on PCS (1–100 scale) and 0.05–0.11 lower on the HRQoL indexes (0–1 scale) than those with normal weight. MCS scores were significantly lower for obese than normal-weight among women (P = 0.04) but not men (P = 0.11). Overweight blacks had higher HRQoL than blacks in other BMI categories (P = 0.033).

Conclusions

Six commonly used HRQoL indexes and two of three health status summary measures indicated lower HRQoL with obesity and overweight than with normal BMI, but the degree of decrement varied by index. The association appeared driven primarily by physical health, although mental health also played a role among women. Counter to hypotheses, blacks may have highest HRQoL when overweight.

Keywords

Body mass index Obesity Health-related quality of life Health status EQ-5D SF-6D 

Abbreviations

BMI

Body mass index

HRQoL

Health-related quality of life

EQ-5D

EuroQol–5 dimensions

HUI2

Health utilities index mark 2

HUI3

Health utilities index mark 3

SF-6D

Short-form–6 dimensions

QWB-SA

Quality of well-being scale—self-administered

HALex

Health and activities limitations index

kg

Kilogram

m

Meter

PCS

Physical component score of SF-36v2™

MCS

Mental component score of SF-36v2™

N

Total number

CI

Confidence interval

CID

Clinically important difference

SE

Standard error

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tanya G. K. Bentley
    • 1
  • Mari Palta
    • 3
  • Adam J. Paulsen
    • 3
  • Dasha Cherepanov
    • 2
    • 4
  • Nancy Cross Dunham
    • 3
  • David Feeny
    • 5
    • 6
  • Robert M. Kaplan
    • 4
  • Dennis G. Fryback
    • 3
  1. 1.Partnership for Health Analytic Research, LLCBeverly HillsUSA
  2. 2.RAND CorporationSanta MonicaUSA
  3. 3.Department of Population Health SciencesUniversity of WisconsinMadisonUSA
  4. 4.Department of Health ServicesUniversity of CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  5. 5.Center for Health ResearchPortlandUSA
  6. 6.Health Utilities IncorporatedDundasCanada

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