Social Indicators Research

, Volume 123, Issue 1, pp 267–279

Quality of Life and Health-Related Quality of Life over 1 Year in Older Women: Monitoring Stability and Reliability of Measurement

  • Yvonne C. Learmonth
  • Elizabeth A. Alwick
  • Edward McAuley
  • Robert W. Motl
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s11205-014-0729-0

Cite this article as:
Learmonth, Y.C., Alwick, E.A., McAuley, E. et al. Soc Indic Res (2015) 123: 267. doi:10.1007/s11205-014-0729-0

Abstract

Assessing quality of life (QOL) and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in older adults is important. Yet, limited research is available on the stability of these constructs and the psychometric properties of QOL [e.g., Satisfaction with Life Scale (SWLS)] and HRQOL [e.g., Short-Form 12 Health Survey (SF-12)] measures in this population. Such knowledge is important for designing and interpreting interventions. We examined stability of QOL (SWLS) and HRQOL (SF-12) and their test–retest reliability, measurement error, and interpretability over 1 year in older Black and White women (n = 230). Stability and reliability were ascertained through paired sample t tests and intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs). Standard error of measurement and coefficient of variation assessed measurement error. Smallest detectable change estimated score interpretability. QOL and HRQOL remained stable; ICC values indicated moderate reliability for the SWLS and SF-12 (SWLS = 0.73, SF-12 Physical Composite Summary = 0.69, SF-12 Mental Composite Summary = 0.58). Measurement error and interpretability estimates were similar for both the SWLS and SF-12. Interpretability estimates indicated a change in score of around 33 % may represent an important change. We provide novel data for selecting and interpreting QOL and HRQOL measures contributing to a better understanding of intervention efficacy.

Keywords

Clinical research Gerontology Measurement 

Abbreviations

QOL

Quality of life

HRQOL

Health-related quality of life

SWLS

Satisfaction with Life Scale

SF-12

Short-Form 12 Health Survey

PCS

Physical Composite Summary

MCS

Mental Composite Summary

ICC

Intraclass correlation coefficient

SEM

Standard error of measurement

CV

Coefficient of variation

SDC

Smallest detectable change

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yvonne C. Learmonth
    • 1
  • Elizabeth A. Alwick
    • 1
  • Edward McAuley
    • 1
  • Robert W. Motl
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Kinesiology and Community HealthUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignUrbanaUSA

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