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Stroke. 1993 Feb;24(2):320-7.

Measuring quality of life in stroke.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, Academic Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.



Little attention has been focused on quality of life in stroke outcome research. The purpose of this review is to outline the meaning of the concept, describe important methodological issues and methods of assessment, review existing quality of life measures, and discuss criteria for selecting an appropriate instrument.


The following 10 quality of life instruments were reviewed: COOP Charts; Euroqol; Frenchay Activities Index; Karnofsky Performance Status Scale; McMaster Health Index Questionnaire; Medical Outcomes Study 20-Item Short-Form Health Survey; Nottingham Health Profile; Quality of Life Index; Quality of Well-being Scale; and the Sickness Impact Profile. They were evaluated in terms of length, time needed to complete, content, scoring, and psychometric characteristics.


Emphasis should be placed on further psychometric evaluation of existing quality of life measures rather than on generating new instruments. There is particular need for supplementary data on the responsiveness of the instruments to changes in patients' clinical status over time. The choice of a suitable quality of life instrument should be based not only on psychometric properties but also on careful consideration of the research question, the relevance to the objectives of the study, the feasibility of the instrument, and the specific characteristics of the stroke patients under investigation.

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