Measuring Quality of Life in Macular Degeneration

  • J. Mitchell
  • C. Bradley
Reference work entry


 Patient-reported outcomes are increasingly used in research and clinical practice in ophthalmology as in other medical specialties.  Measures of health status, psychological well-being,  functional status, and visual function are frequently referred to as quality of life (QOL) measures and have been used as such in research into macular degeneration (MD). However, such patient-reported outcomes do not measure QOL, although the constructs may be related to or influence QOL. When inappropriate or insensitive measures are used as QOL measures, the findings can be misleading and may lead to incorrect management of patients. Care is needed in the selection of patient reported outcomes (PROs) for use in research and clinical practice to ensure that they are appropriate for the intended purpose. In addition, PROs should be psychometrically validated, demonstrating qualities including face, content and construct validity, internal consistency and test-retest reliability and responsiveness.

 Utility values obtained using methods such as  time trade-off and  standard gamble are used to calculate  quality adjusted life years and are frequently referred to as QOL measures. However, they do not measure QOL and give no impression of the ways in which MD or any other medical condition impacts on QOL. For older people, such as those with MD, the questions are particularly difficult to answer.

PROs have shown that MD has a considerable negative impact on the lives of people with the condition and on their families. The use of PROs is valuable in assessing the impact of clinical and rehabilitative interventions and other services for people with MD. Ideally a complementary combination of PROs would used for evaluation purposes to ensure considerate, individually tailored and effective management of this group of patients.


Visual Function Macular Degeneration Diabetes Treatment Satisfaction Questionnaire Standard Gamble Method Average Weighted Impact 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

List of Abbreviations:


activities of daily vision scale


choroidal neovascularization


diabetes treatment satisfaction questionnaire


EuroQOL 5-dimension questionnaire


functional status


health status


health utility index 3


macular service satisfaction questionnaire


macular treatment satisfaction questionnaire


macular degeneration


National Eye Institute visual function questionnaire


National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence


patient-reported outcome


quality adjusted life year


quality of life


short form 36


standard gamble


time trade-off


 visual acuity


12-item well-being questionnaire


World Health Organisation


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© Springer Science+Business Media LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Mitchell
  • C. Bradley

There are no affiliations available

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