Health status 'quality of life'

M. Carone, P. W. Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Since therapy of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is directed mainly towards a reduction of exacerbations, minimization of symptom severity, and improvement in patients' well-being or 'quality of life', the measurement of patients' global health status is of growing interest among physicians, particularly in rehabilitation. There is evidence that it is not possible to predict patients' health from surrogate measures such as spirometry or exercise performance. Adequate assessments of health status can only be measured directly through the use of valid and reliable instruments. To provide a reliable and sensitive estimate of health status, general health questionnaires and disease-specific questionnaires have been developed. The generic questionnaires were designed to measure disturbance to health irrespective of cause: their reproducibility and validity have been verified for different diseases, the same questionnaire can be presented to different patients and the same procedure applied to score it. However, they were not designed specifically for respiratory patients and, as a result, may not be sufficiently sensitive to detect clinically significant changes following treatment. Disease-specific questionnaires were designed to overcome the potential lack of sensitivity of generic instruments. Pulmonary rehabilitation represents the appropriate setting for health status measurements, since these measurements allow an estimate of the overall impact of the treatment, rather than just addressing specific aspects of the treatment effect.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)22-35
Number of pages14
JournalEuropean Respiratory Monograph
Issue number13
Publication statusPublished - 2000


  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • Health status
  • Quality of life
  • Rehabilitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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