eCite Digital Repository

Assessment of quality of life in people with severe and enduring anorexia nervosa: a comparison of generic and specific instruments


Mitchison, D and Hay, P and Engel, S and Crosby, R and Le Grange, D and Lacey, H and Mond, JM and Slewa-Younan, S and Touyz, S, Assessment of quality of life in people with severe and enduring anorexia nervosa: a comparison of generic and specific instruments, BMC psychiatry, 13 Article 284. ISSN 1471-244X (2013) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Copyright 2013 Mitchison et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0)

DOI: doi:10.1186/1471-244X-13-284


Background: Criticisms that generic measures of health-related quality of life (HRQoL) are not sensitive to impairment in anorexia nervosa (AN) has spurred the development of disease-specific measures. This study aimed to compare the psychometric properties of a generic to a disease-specific measure of HRQoL.

Methods: 63 participants with AN completed measures of a generic HRQoL (SF-12), disease-specific HRQoL (Eating Disorders Quality of Life Questionnaire; EDQOL), functional impairment (days out of role; DOR; Work and Social Adjustment Scale; WSAS), and eating disorder severity (Eating Disorder Examination; EDE) at baseline, post-treatment, and 6- and 12-months follow-up. Cronbach’s α was computed for the SF-12 and EDQOL (internal consistency). Correlations were assessed between SF-12/EDQOL scores and DOR, WSAS, and EDE scores (convergence validity). Three sets of three multiple linear regressions were performed using SF-12 and EDQOL scores as predictors and change in DOR, WSAS, and EDE global scores from baseline to (i) post-treatment, (ii) 6-month follow-up, (iii) and 12-month follow-up as dependent variables (predictive validity and sensitivity).

Results: The EDQOL displayed stronger internal consistency (α = 0.92) than the SF-12 (α = 0.80). The SF-12 converged more strongly with DOR and the WSAS (rp = −0.31 to −0.63 vs. 0.06 to 0.70), while the EDQOL converged more strongly with the EDE (rp = −0.01 to 0.48 vs. -0.01 to −0.37). The SF-12 demonstrated stronger predictive validity (β = −0.55 to 0.29) and sensitivity to changes in ED severity (β = −0.47 to 0.32).

Conclusions: The SF-12 is a valid and sensitive measure of HRQoL impairment in patients with AN. While the SF-12 may be preferred in research comparing EDs to other populations, and in research and practice as an indicator of functional impairment; the EDQOL may be preferred by clinicians and researchers interested in HRQoL impairment specifically associated with an ED and as an additional indicator of ED severity.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Quality of life, Anorexia nervosa, Questionnaires, Psychometric, Eating disorder, Measurement, Burden, Treatment
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Health services and systems
Research Field:Mental health services
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public health (excl. specific population health)
Objective Field:Mental health
UTAS Author:Mond, JM (Dr Jon Mond)
ID Code:117812
Year Published:2013
Web of Science® Times Cited:24
Deposited By:UTAS Centre for Rural Health
Deposited On:2017-06-27
Last Modified:2017-11-07
Downloads:118 View Download Statistics

Repository Staff Only: item control page