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P-QOL: a validated questionnaire to assess the symptoms and quality of life of women with urogenital prolapse

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To develop a simple, valid, reliable questionnaire to assess the severity of symptoms and their impact on the quality of life in women with urogenital prolapse. Women recruited from gynaecology outpatient clinics were asked to complete a prolapse quality of life questionnaire (P-QOL) before their hospital visit. At the time of the visit, they were examined supine using the International Continence Society (ICS) prolapse score (POP-Q). A second P-QOL was posted and completed by patients 2 weeks later. The validity was assessed by measuring levels of missing data, comparing symptom scores between affected and asymptomatic women and comparing symptom scores with objective prolapse stages. The internal reliability was assessed by measuring the Cronbach alpha coefficient; 155 symptomatic and 80 asymptomatic women were studied. Severity according to P-QOL strongly correlated with the vaginal examination findings (p<0.01, rho>0.5). The total scores for each P-QOL domain were significantly different between symptomatic and asymptomatic women (p<0.001). All items achieved a Cronbach alpha greater than 0.80 showing good inter-rater reliability. The test-retest reliability confirmed a highly significant correlation between the total scores for each domain. A P-QOL questionnaire for English-speaking patients has been developed which is reliable and valid.

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Correspondence to G. Alessandro Digesu.

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Editorial Comment: This paper introduces a new questionnaire to assess the symptoms and quality of life of women with urogenital prolapse. The authors have compared symptomatic woman with asymptomatic women in the evaluation of this new tool. Using well-controlled statistical analysis, a patient-directed diagnostic tool has been formulated. The role of this questionnaire and its applicability to clinical practice is widespread. This gives the clinician the ability to correlate symptom bother with actual physical findings. Additionally, quality of life parameters can be used in the postoperative period to gain insight into patients’ subjective assessment of their surgical outcomes



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Digesu, G.A., Khullar, V., Cardozo, L. et al. P-QOL: a validated questionnaire to assess the symptoms and quality of life of women with urogenital prolapse. Int Urogynecol J 16, 176–181 (2005).

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