Cross Sectional Assessment of Health Related Quality of Life (HRQoL) among Patients with Cancer in Malaysia

  • Farooqui, Maryam (Faculty of Pharmacy, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM)) ;
  • Hassali, Mohamed Azmi (Discipline of Social and Administrative Pharmacy, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM)) ;
  • Knight, Aishah (Advanced Medical and Dental Institute, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM)) ;
  • Shafie, Asrul Akmal (Discipline of Social and Administrative Pharmacy, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM)) ;
  • Farooqui, Muhammad Aslam (Department of Medicine, Allianze University College of Medical Sciences (AUCMS)) ;
  • Saleem, Fahad (Discipline of Social and Administrative Pharmacy, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM)) ;
  • ul Haq, Noman (Discipline of Social and Administrative Pharmacy, Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM)) ;
  • Othman, Che Noriah (Faculty of Pharmacy, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM)) ;
  • Aljadhey, Hisham (College of Pharmacy King Saud University)
  • Published : 2013.05.30


Background: Health Related Quality of Life (HRQoL) is an important aspect in identifying cancer patients' perceptions of being diagnosed with cancer and the assessment of treatment outcomes. The present study aimedto assess the profile and predicators of HRQoL of Malaysian oncology patients. Materials and Methods: A cross sectional study adopting the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaire (EORTC QLQ-C30) was conducted. All cancer patients attending Penang General Hospital between August-November 2011 were approached. Descriptive statistics were used to assess demographic and disease related characteristics of the patients. All analyses were performed using SPSS v 16.0. Results: Three hundred and ninety three cancer patients met the inclusion criteria and were enrolled in the study. The mean age was 53.9 ($SD{\pm}13$) years. The cohort was dominated by females (n=260, 66.2%). Nearly half (n=190, 48.3%) of the participants were of Malay ethnicity, practicing Islam as their religion (n=194, 494%). Two hundred and ninety six (n=296, 75.3%) had beene diagnosed with cancer within six months to 3 years previously. The most common primary cancer site was breast (n=143, 36.4%). The mean Global Health Status (GHS) score was 60.7 (SD=21.3). Females (mean GHS score of 62.3, p=0.035) with Malay ethnicity (mean GHS score of 63.8, p=0.047), practicing Islam as their religion (mean GHS score of 63.0, p=0.011) had better GHS scores. Patients having medical insurance had good scores (mean 65.6, p-0.021). Marital status was significantly associated with GHS scores (p=0.022). Bone cancer patientshad the lowest mean GHS score of 49.2 (p=0.044). Patients at very advanced stages of cancer featured a low GHS mean score of 52.2 (p<0.001). Conclusions: The present study identified many demographic and disease related factors which may contribute to the HRQoL of cancer patients, pointing to the necessity for improved management of disease symptoms and provision of psychological and financial support.


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