Quality of life of traumatic spinal cord injured patients in Hong Kong
Yong Hu, Joseph NF Mak, Yat Wa Wong, John CY Leong, Keith DK Luk
Objective: To assess the health-related quality of life of patients with traumatic spinal cord injury living in Hong Kong.
Design: A cross-sectional retrospective study.
Subjects: Subjects with paraplegia following traumatic spinal cord injury were recruited from our department, which is one of the 3 main regional spinal cord injury rehabilitation centres in Hong Kong. A total of 120 potential participants were invited to join the study. The final study group comprised 58 patients (25 (43%) men and 33 (57%) women, 30 (50%) of whom were under 40 years of age).
Methods: Health-related quality of life was assessed using the Hong Kong Chinese version of the World Health Organization Quality of Life Measure Abbreviated version (WHOQOL-BREF(HK)). Results were summarized and compared with previous results from healthy and other disease populations in Hong Kong.
Results: There was no significant difference in quality of life between men and women, or between different durations of spinal cord injury, different educational levels or different marital status (p>0.05). However, a significant difference in quality of life was found in different age groups and between people with incomplete and complete paraplegia (p<0.05). Compared with healthy and other disease populations, people with paraplegia had the lowest quality of life in Hong Kong (p<0.001).
Conclusion: People with paraplegia in Hong Kong have a lower quality of life than the general Hong Kong population. More community support is required to meet the needs of these patients in the areas of transportation, medical care and social life, in particular.
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