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Health Qual Life Outcomes. 2013 Oct 3;11:162. doi: 10.1186/1477-7525-11-162.

Preference-based Health status in a German outpatient cohort with multiple sclerosis.

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Department of Neurology, Philipps-University, Marburg, Germany.



To prospectively determine health status and health utility and its predictors in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS).


A total of 144 MS patients (mean age: 41.0 ± 11.3 y) with different subtypes (patterns of progression) and severities of MS were recruited in an outpatient university clinic in Germany. Patients completed a questionnaire at baseline (n = 144), 6 months (n = 65) and 12 months (n = 55). Health utilities were assessed using the EuroQol instrument (EQ-5D, EQ VAS). Health status was assessed by several scales (Expanded Disability Severity Scale (EDSS), Modified Fatigue Impact Scale (M-FIS), Functional Assessment of MS (FAMS), Beck Depression Inventory (BDI-II) and Multiple Sclerosis Functional Composite (MSFC)). Additionally, demographic and socioeconomic parameters were assessed. Multivariate linear and logistic regressions were applied to reveal independent predictors of health status.


Health status is substantially diminished in MS patients and the EQ VAS was considerably lower than that of the general German population. No significant change in health-status parameters was observed over a 12-months period. Multivariate analyses revealed M-FIS, BDI-II, MSFC, and EDSS to be significant predictors of reduced health status. Socioeconomic and socio-demographic parameters such as working status, family status, number of household inhabitants, age, and gender did not prove significant in multivariate analyses.


MS considerably impairs patients' health status. Guidelines aiming to improve self-reported health status should include treatment options for depression and fatigue. Physicians should be aware of depression and fatigue as co-morbidities. Future studies should consider the minimal clinical difference when health status is a primary outcome.

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