Elena Tsangaris, Emiel LWG van Haren, Lotte Poulsen, Lee Squitieri, Maarten M Hoogbergen, Karen Cross, Jens Ahm Sørensen, Tert C van Alphen, Andrea Pusic, Anne F Klassen

Identifying health-related quality of life concepts to inform the development of the WOUND-Q

  • Nursing (miscellaneous)
  • Fundamentals and skills

Objective: The impact of hard-to-heal wounds extends beyond traditional clinical metrics, negatively affecting a patient's health-related quality of life (HRQoL). Yet treatment outcomes are seldom measured from the patient's perspective. The purpose of the present study was to perform in-depth qualitative interviews with patients diagnosed with varying types of hard-to-heal wounds to identify outcomes important to them. Method: Participants were recruited from wound care clinics in Canada, Denmark, the Netherlands and the US, and were included if they had a hard-to-heal wound (i.e., lasting ≥3 months), were aged ≥18 years, and fluent in English, Dutch or Danish. Qualitative interviews took place between January 2016 and March 2017. An interpretive description qualitative approach guided the data analysis. Interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed and coded line-by-line. Codes were categorised into top-level domains and themes that formed the final conceptual framework. Results: We performed 60 in-depth interviews with patients with a range of wound types in different anatomic locations that had lasted from three months to 25 years. Participants described outcomes that related to three top-level domains and 13 major themes: wound (characteristics, healing); HRQoL (physical, psychological, social); and treatment (cleaning, compression stocking, debridement, dressing, hyperbaric oxygen, medication, suction device, surgery). Conclusion: The conceptual framework developed as part of this study represents the outcome domains that mattered the most to the patients with hard-to-heal wounds. Interview quotes were used to generate items that formed the WOUND-Q scales, a patient-reported outcome measure for patients with hard-to-heal wounds.

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