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ORIGINAL ARTICLE: The relationship between patients’ perception of the effects of neurofibromatosis type 2 and the domains of the Short Form-36

Authors


Dr W. Neary, Warrington Primary Care Trust, Community Paediatric Audiology Services, Child Development Centre, Sandy Lane, Orford, Warrington WA2 9HY, Cheshire, UK.
Tel.: 01925 867883; fax: 01925 575173; e-mail: wneary@doctors.org.uk

Abstract

Clin. Otolaryngol. 2010, 35, 291–299

Objectives:  To investigate the relationship between those issues concerning quality of life in patients with neurofibromatosis type 2 (NF2) as identified by the closed set NF2 questionnaire and the eight norm-based measures and the physical component summary (PCS) and mental component summary (MCS) scores of the Short Form-36 (SF-36) Questionnaire.

Design:  Postal questionnaire study.

Setting:  Questionnaires sent to subjects’ home addresses.

Participants:  Eighty-seven adult subjects under the care of the Manchester Multidisciplinary NF2 Clinic were invited to participate.

Main outcome measures:  Sixty-two (71%) completed sets of closed set NF2 questionnaires and SF-36 questionnaires were returned.

Results:  Subjects with NF2 scored less than the norm of 50 on both the physical component summary and mental component summary scores and the eight individual norm-based measures of the Short Form-36 questionnaire. Correlations (using Kendall’s tau) were examined between patients’ perceptions of their severity of difficulty with the following activities and the eight norm-based measures and the physical component summary and mental component summary scores of the Short Form-36 questionnaire: Communicating with spouse/significant other (N = 61). The correlation coefficients were significant at the 0.01 level for the mental component summary score, together with three of the norm-based scores [vitality (VT), social functioning and role emotional]. Social communication (N = 62). All 10 correlations were significant at the 0.01 or 0.001 level. Balance (N = 59). All 10 correlations were highly significant at the P < 0.001 level. Hearing difficulties (N = 61). All correlations were significant at either the 0.01 level or less apart from the mental component summary score and three of the norm-based scores (role physical, VT and mental health). Mood change (N = 61). All correlations were significant at the 0.01 level or less, apart from one norm-based score (role physical).

Conclusions:  The Short Form-36 questionnaire has allowed us to relate patients’ perceptions of their difficulties, as identified by the closed set NF2 questionnaire, to the physical and mental domains measured by this validated and widely used scale, and has provided further insight into areas of functioning affected by NF2.

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