Quality of Life Research

, Volume 25, Issue 9, pp 2341–2346 | Cite as

Long-term health-related quality of life in eating disorders

  • Veera Pohjolainen
  • Salla Koponen
  • Pirjo Räsänen
  • Risto P. Roine
  • Harri Sintonen
  • Hasse Karlsson
Brief Communication



There is limited evidence on the long-term development of health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in eating disorders and its relation to eating disorder symptoms. Our objective was to measure long-term change in the HRQoL of eating disorder patients and compare it to normal population.


Fifty-four bulimia nervosa (BN) and forty-seven anorexia nervosa (AN) patients (ICD-10 diagnosis) entering treatment completed the 15D HRQoL questionnaire and the Eating Disorder Inventory (EDI) before and approximately 8 years after the start of treatment.


Baseline HRQoL was severely impaired in the patients. During follow-up, mean HRQoL, body mass index (BMI) and EDI improved statistically significantly in both groups. BMI of AN patients reached normal values, but HRQoL was still severely impaired in both AN and BN compared to general population.


The long-term HRQoL after treatment continues to improve, but is still after 8 years poor. Eating disorders are very serious conditions with long-lasting impact on quality of life even after symptom remission.


Health-related quality of life (HRQoL) Anorexia nervosa Bulimia nervosa Eating disorders 



The study was funded by research grants from the Hospital Group of Helsinki and Uusimaa, Yrjö Jahnsson Foundation (No. 6458), Gyllenberg Foundation and the National Graduate School of Clinical Investigation.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

Harri Sintonen is the developer of the 15D instrument. Otherwise, the authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest with regard to any of the material presented in this article.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants performed by any of the authors.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Veera Pohjolainen
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    • 8
  • Salla Koponen
    • 1
    • 3
  • Pirjo Räsänen
    • 4
  • Risto P. Roine
    • 4
    • 5
  • Harri Sintonen
    • 6
  • Hasse Karlsson
    • 7
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryHospital District of Helsinki and UusimaaHelsinkiFinland
  2. 2.Department of PsychiatryCity of Helsinki, Health CentreHelsinkiFinland
  3. 3.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of HelsinkiHelsinkiFinland
  4. 4.External Evaluation UnitHospital District of Helsinki and UusimaaHelsinkiFinland
  5. 5.University of Eastern FinlandKuopioFinland
  6. 6.Department of Public HealthUniversity of HelsinkiHelsinkiFinland
  7. 7.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of Turku and Hospital District of Southwest FinlandTurkuFinland
  8. 8.Aurora HospitalHelsinkiFinland

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