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01-08-2014 | Uitgave 6/2014

Quality of Life Research 6/2014

Factors associated with health-related quality of life in chronic leg ulceration

Quality of Life Research > Uitgave 6/2014
Wilma M. Hopman, Elizabeth G. VanDenKerkhof, Meg E. Carley, Janet L. Kuhnke, Margaret B. Harrison



Individuals with chronic leg ulceration may have significantly impaired health-related quality of life (HRQOL) due to pain, impaired mobility, poor sleep, depression, restricted work capacity, and social isolation. The study purpose was to examine the associations among sociodemographic and clinical factors and HRQOL in a large sample of community-dwelling adults being treated for leg ulcers.


Data are from the cross-sectional baseline assessment of the Canadian Bandaging Trial, a multi-center, randomized controlled trial conducted to assess time to healing with two forms of high-compression bandaging. All participants received a comprehensive, standardized clinical assessment, and completed the 12-item Short Form (SF-12) and McGill Pain Questionnaire. SF-12 data were compared to age- and sex-adjusted norms, and multivariable logistic regression was used to identify factors associated with whether individuals were below, or at/above their normative values on the physical and mental component summary (PCS, MCS).


Of 424 individuals enrolled over a 50-month period, 407 (96 %) completed the SF-12. Mean age was 65 ± 17 years, and 55 % were women. Mean PCS was 39.1 ± 9.9 with 91 (22.4 %) scoring at/above the mean value for their age and sex; equivalent values for the MCS were 51.4 ± 9.9 and 209 (51.4 %). Higher levels of pain, younger age, larger size and longer duration of ulcer, and limited mobility were associated with poorer HRQOL.


Findings confirm the considerable burden of illness associated with leg ulcers. Given the chronic and recurring nature of the condition, strategies focused on improving HRQOL and healing are needed for this vulnerable population.

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