Aim. This article is a report of a study investigating health-related quality of life and its predictors 6months after hospital discharge in individuals who had experienced moderate to severe injury. Background. Understanding the relationship between individuals' illness representations and health-related quality of life may provide the foundation for strategies to promote recovery after injury.
Methods. A longitudinal predictive a survey was undertaken. Questionnaires were administered while patients were in hospital, and telephone interviews were conducted 3 and 6months after hospital discharge. Data were collected from August 2006 to February 2007. Demographic and clinical data were collected and the Chinese Illness Perception Questionnaire Revised (Trauma) and the Medical Outcomes Study Short Form 36, were used. Simultaneous multiple regressions were used to identify predictors of health-related quality of life.
Results. A total of 114 participants completed the 6-month survey. Demographic and clinical characteristics did not predict health-related quality of life. Predictors of 6-month Physical Summary Score were 3-month Physical Summary Score and two illness representation scales: Identity and Timeline (acute/chronic). Predictors of 6-month were 3-month Mental Summary Score, and three illness representation scales: Identity, Emotional representations and Timeline (acute/chronic). Independent variables accounted for 75·1% and 72·4% of the variance in Physical and Mental Summary Scores.
Conclusion. Assessment of patients' illness representations may help clinicians to understand better how people who have sustained traumatic injury view their health and health-related quality of life and to help patients in their recovery process.