Nature and correlates of SF-12 physical and mental quality of life components among low-income HIV adults using an HIV service center

Research paper by Hema Viswanathan, Rodney Anderson, Joseph Thomas

Indexed on: 01 May '05Published on: 01 May '05Published in: Quality of life research : an international journal of quality of life aspects of treatment, care and rehabilitation


Objectives: This study describes health-related quality of life (HRQOL) among low-income HIV adults using an HIV service center, compares participants’ scores to US published norms for the general population and persons with chronic conditions, and examines relationships between patient characteristics, nonadherence, and HRQOL. Methods: A cross-sectional survey of individuals on antiretroviral therapy was conducted. The Medical Outcomes Study SF-12 was used to assess HRQOL. Medication nonadherence was assessed using the 9-item Morisky Adherence Scale. Data also were collected on social support, CD4 cell count, and time since diagnosis. Results: Approximately 84% of the 86 participants were male, 50% were white, and 39% were black. The ean ± SD Physical component summary (PCS-12) score of 41.0 ± 12.5 and Mental component summary (MCS-12) score of 41.9 ± 11.0 were lower than US general population norms (p < 0.001). PCS-12 scores were similar to those of patients with other chronic conditions. Respondents reported lower MCS-12 scores than patients with hypertension and diabetes (p < 0.006). Employment and higher social support had positive associations with PCS-12 scores and nonadherence had a negative association with MCS-12 scores (p < 0.05). Conclusions: HRQOL in this sample of low-income HIV adults was comparable to other HIV populations. Identifying strategies for increasing social support and medication adherence for economically disadvantaged persons with HIV/AIDS may improve their HRQOL.