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The Association Between Stressful Life Events and Asthma-Specific Quality of Life FREE TO VIEW

Connie Archea, BS*; Patricia P. Katz, PhD; Irene H. Yen, PhD; Gillian Earnest, MS; Edward H. Yelin, PhD; Mark D. Eisner, MD; Paul D. Blanc, MD
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UCSF, San Francisco, CA


Chest. 2004;126(4_MeetingAbstracts):812S. doi:10.1378/chest.126.4_MeetingAbstracts.812S
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PURPOSE:  Exposure to stressful life events increases the risk for physical health problems in general, but has not been well studied in asthma specifically. We evaluated the relationship of a subset of stressful life events with asthma quality of life outcomes.

METHODS:  We studied survey data from 190 adults with asthma (mean age 46+9 years; 69% female) participating in a larger study of airways disease. We examined the relationship between a subset of the 41-item version of the Life Events Survey (LES) and the Marks Asthma Quality of Life (AQOL) score.

RESULTS:  Seven events from the LES occurring in previous year were associated with significantly poorer AQOL (all p <0.05) These were: serious illness or injury; surgery or hospitalization; death of a pet; someone moved out of the home; a major car accident involving self, a family member or friend; lack of money to pay bills; major argument(s) with a family member or friend. The mean decrement in AQOL (reflected in higher score) associated with these events ranged from 1.8 (death of a pet) to 7.7 points (serious illness or injury). Fifty-five (29%) of subjects experienced none of the 7 events; 50 (26%) reported 1 only; 35 (18%) 2 only; and 50 (26%) reported 3-7. Respondents with no events had a mean AQOL score of 9.5 + 10.6; those with one event, 13.5+11.7; those with two, 19.2+18.4; those with 3-7, 23.6 +18.7 (ANOVA p<0.05). A sensitivity analysis excluding illness/injury and surgery hospitalization [cumulative response frequencies collapsed to 0, 1 or 2 or more events] continued to show an incremental worsening in AQOL with more stressful events (ANOVA p< 0.05).

CONCLUSION:  Selected stressful life events are associated with impaired AQOL. Multiple events have an incremental impact on AQOL.

CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS:  Certain stressful life events may linked to poorer AQOL; some of these may be clinical (serious illness, hospitalization), while other events may reflect psychological or social stress, including financial and emotional issues.

DISCLOSURE:  C. Archea, None.

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

12:30 PM - 2:00 PM




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