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01-03-2015 | Uitgave 3/2015

Quality of Life Research 3/2015

The relationship of health-related quality of life and treatment outcome during inpatient treatment of depression

Quality of Life Research > Uitgave 3/2015
Stephan Köhler, Theresa Unger, Sabine Hoffmann, Arthur Mackert, Barbara Ross, Thomas Fydrich



Health-related quality of life (HRQoL) is important for long-term social functioning. It is considerably reduced in patients with depression. We studied the impact of HRQoL on treatment outcome in patients with unipolar depression. Furthermore, we analysed factors associated with HRQoL in inpatients with unipolar depression.


One hundred and eighty patients suffering from major depressive disorder were evaluated during their inpatient treatment by assessing admission and discharge depression severity and their HRQoL, using the Medical Outcomes Study 12-item Short Form (SF-12). Baseline and treatment variables associated with HRQoL were examined by regression analysis. Primary outcome measures were the Hamilton Rating Scale and the Beck Depression Inventory.


HRQoL improved significantly during inpatient treatment. Lower HRQoL outcomes were strongly associated with higher age, somatic comorbidities, a recurrent depressive disorder and stronger depressive symptoms at admission. Additionally, patients with a complex treatment situation (high number of medications, antidepressant switch) showed stronger impairment of HRQoL. Personality disorders and additional psychotherapy did not predict HRQoL.


The inpatient treatment resulted in an increase of the SF-12 scores, although to a lower extent than depressive symptoms. Several factors negatively influence HRQoL, such as the presence of somatic and axis I psychiatric comorbiditites and a recurrent or severe depressive episode. Targeting somatic comorbidities in patients with unipolar depression seem to play an important role for HRQoL.

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