Author(s): Kwok HC, Morton RP, Chaplin JM, McIvor NP, Sillars HA
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Abstract OBJECTIVES: The purposes of this study were to examine the quality of life (QL) of patients who received treatment for cancer of the parotid or temporal region, and to identify factors contributing to it. The relationships between clinician-based measures of treatment outcome and the patient-based counterparts were also evaluated. METHODS: A retrospective, cross-sectional study was conducted on 23 patients who had received either a temporal bone resection or a combination of parotidectomy and radiotherapy. The QL survey involved both global QL and measures of the appearance, communication, hearing, physical, psychological, and social domains. Patients were assessed clinically for their performance status, facial nerve function, disfigurement, and hearing and the results were compared with patient-rated QL. Correlation between the QL variables and global QL was identified using Spearman correlation tests. RESULTS: Ongoing physical symptoms, communication difficulties, and social disturbances were associated with poorer global QL (P <.05). No correlation was detected between global QL and objective disfigurement, facial function, and measures of hearing loss. With the exception of hearing testing, clinical assessments generally did not correlate well with patient ratings. CONCLUSION: QL measures provide insight into patients' perceptions of the treatment outcome but do not necessarily correlate with the clinicians' views. The use of a global QL measure overcomes the difficulty of extrapolating the impact of symptom scores or observational measures on patients' overall quality of survival.
This article was published in Laryngoscope
and referenced in Journal of Clinical Case Reports