Department of Pulmonary Medicine
Nursing Department, Shaheed Sadoughi University of Medical Sciences and Health Services, YAZD-IRAN.
Background: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is a major cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide and is probable to be the third cause of death in the world in 2020. COPD is a highly prevalent, irreversible, and disabling disease with no definite cure which will stay with the patient for life affecting physical, mental and socioeconomic status as well as the quality of life. Therefore, creation of a positive perception of health and preserving the quality of life in these patients are of utmost importance and should be an essential goal in treatment and care of these patients. To reach this goal, first, the quality of life in these patients should be evaluated to assess the effects of mental, social and physical aspects of the disease on the life style of these patients. Materials and Methods: A descriptive case series study was undertaken. The understudy population comprised 80 COPD patients which were selected consecutively. They all filled out the standard respiratory disease questionnaire including: 1) Demographic specifications 2) the St George's Respiratory Questionnaire (SGRQ, includes symptoms, activities, and impact). To collect the data, COPD patients who met the inclusion criteria were selected and questionnaires were filled through interviewing or selfreporting in 20 minutes. The questionnaire was scored from 0 to 100 points. The lower score indicated the better life quality and the higher score indicated deterioration. The collected data were analyzed using Microsoft Excel and SPSS 11.5 software. Results: Mean and standard deviation of the SGRQ total score in understudy patients were 58.31±16.14 (63.09±19.52 for symptoms, 76.35±17.65 for activities and 46.41±17.79 for impact parts). There were no significant differences between the SGRQ total score and sex, age, occupation and level of education. One sided variance analysis and Pearson’s correlation coefficient demonstrated a significant difference between the total score and duration of disease (p=0.01), stages of disease (p=0.02) and also the causes of COPD (p=0.02). Regarding the stages of disease, a significant difference was found between stages 2, 3 and 4 respectively according to SGRQ total score (p=0.02, P=0.04). A significant difference was also seen between smoking and a combination of factors regarding the causes of the disease (p=0.02). Conclusion: According to our study results, quality of life in COPD patients was moderate to low and this would deteriorate with duration of the disease and its severity. Also, high-risk occupations in addition to cigarette smoking deteriorate the quality of life considerably. (Tanaffos 2006; 5(3): 51-56)