Hepatitis C virus infection is associated with decreased health-related quality of life.
Although Hepatitis C has been suggested to directly impair neuropsychiatric functions, other factors may also play a role.
Dr Helbling and colleagues from Switzerland assessed the impact of various host-, disease- and virus-related factors on health-related quality of life in a large, unselected population of anti-Hepatitis C-positive subjects.
The team evaluated 1736 individuals enrolled in the Swiss Hepatitis C Cohort Study (SCCS) were asked to complete the Short Form 36 and the Hospital Anxiety Depression Scale.
|Anti-Hep C-positive subjects have decreased health related quality of life|
The researchers reported that 48% of patients returned the questionnaires.
Survey participants had significantly worse scores in both assessment instruments when compared to a general population.
By multivariable analysis, reduced health related quality of life was independently associated with income.
In addition, the researchers noted that a low physical summary score was associated with age and diabetes, whereas a low mental summary score was associated with intravenous drug use.
Hospital Anxiety Depression Scale anxiety and depression scores were independently associated with income and intravenous drug use.
The team noted that Hospital Anxiety Depression Scale depression score was associated with diabetes.
The research team found that none of the Short Form-36 or Hospital Anxiety Depression Scale scores correlated with either the presence or the level of serum Hepatitis C RNA.
In particular, Short From-36 and Hospital Anxiety Depression Scale scores were comparable in 555 Hepatitis C RNA-positive and 262 Hepatitis C RNA-negative individuals.
Dr Helbling’s team comments, “Anti-Hepatitis C-positive subjects have decreased health related quality of life compared to controls.”
“The magnitude of this decrease was clinically important for the Short Form-36 vitality score.”
“Host and environmental, rather than viral factors, seem to impact on health related quality of life level.”