Hong Kong Med J 2007;13(Suppl 2):S23-7
Quality of life and handicap of stroke survivors in Hong Kong
T Kwok, R Lo, J Woo, R Kay, KF Leung
Department of Medicine and Therapeutics, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Prince of Wales Hospital, Shatin, Hong Kong
1. Between 3 and 12 months after first disabling stroke, despite having small but significant improvement in basic functional status, quality of life (QOL) deteriorated significantly in terms of psychological health, social relationships, and perceived living environment, which lead to an increased handicap in terms of orientation.
2. Very old (≥80 years) stroke patients are at risk of deterioration in handicap with time.
3. The presence of a spouse predicted a significant decline in physical and environmental QOL.
4. Pain in affected limbs was associated with physical QOL and predicted a significant decline.
5. Depressive mood had a significant and generalised adverse effect on QOL and handicap, while disability in basic activities of daily living was primarily associated with physical and psychological decreases in QOL only.
6. Old-age home residence, lack of physical exercise, and the prescription of soft diets or tube feeding were both associated with poor QOL and handicap.
7. For stroke patients who have residual medical and psychosocial problems that result in deteriorating QOL and handicap months after hospital discharge, the day hospital can offer multidisciplinary assessment, rehabilitation, caregiver training, and counselling.