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Exploring quality of life as an intervention outcome among women with stress-related disorders participating in work rehabilitation

Authors Eklund M

Received 17 September 2014

Accepted for publication 7 November 2014

Published 13 January 2015 Volume 2015:6 Pages 1—7


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Robert Howland

Mona Eklund

Department of Health Sciences, Lund University, Lund, Sweden

Background: Findings from quality of life studies are often inconclusive for reasons such as: i) estimates may address different aspects of quality of life and thus produce different outcomes; ii) quality of life is largely determined by self-factors; and iii) people with a long-term condition rate their quality of life better than those who have had their condition for a short duration. This makes quality of life a complex phenomenon to measure.
Aims: The above explanations served as hypotheses for this methodologically oriented paper, based on a longitudinal study on women with stress-related disorders receiving work rehabilitation.
Methods: Eighty-four women participating in a lifestyle intervention or care as usual were compared. Self-ratings of “general quality of life” and a summarized “satisfaction with different life domains” index (according to Manchester Short Assessment of Quality of Life) and two self-factors (self-esteem and self-mastery) were administered at admission and a 6-month follow-up. Participant age and amount of months on sick leave prior to rehabilitation were used as two proxies of duration of the condition.
Results: General quality of life distinguished between the groups, whereas satisfaction with life domains did not. Self-esteem and self-mastery were related to both quality of life aspects. Age was related to both estimates of quality of life, whereas duration of sick leave was unrelated to both.
Conclusion: General quality of life and satisfaction with life domains produced different results. Outcome studies should apply more than one operationalization of quality of life and self-factors should be considered as important determinants of quality of life. Duration of the condition needs to be acknowledged as well when interpreting levels of quality of life, although the current study could not present any clear-cut findings in this respect.

Keywords: stress, mastery, sick leave, self, occupation

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