Improved quality of life after lung transplantation in individuals with cystic fibrosis

Pediatr Pulmonol. 2004 May;37(5):419-26. doi: 10.1002/ppul.20009.


The aim of the present study was to assess the effect of lung transplantation (LgTX) on health-related quality of life (HRQL) in a group of patients with cystic fibrosis (CF), compared to patients with other diagnoses (non-CF). HRQL was assessed before transplantation in a group of 32 CF patients and 183 non-CF patients. After LgTX, we conducted a prospective longitudinal study among 10 CF patients and 35 non-CF patients who survived at least 31 months after LgTX. Measures were the Nottingham Health Profile (NHP), the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI), the Self-Rating Depression Scale (ZUNG), the Index of Well-Being (IWB), and the Karnofsky Performance Index. Patients in the CF group were younger, spent more days on the waiting list, and were more likely to be working or going to school than patients with other indications. Before transplantation, CF patients and non-CF patients experienced restrictions on almost all HRQL measures, compared to the general population. On the NHP dimensions of mobility and energy, CF patients had significantly better scores than non-CF patients. Between 1-4 months after transplantation, scores on the NHP, ZUNG, and Karnofsky performance indices improved, and STAI and IWB scores even occurred within the reference value in both groups. Significantly better scores in the CF group compared to the non-CF group were found on the NHP dimension of mobility 4 months after transplantation, and on the dimension of sleep 7 and 13 months after transplantation. Scores remained more or less stable over time in both groups. It may be concluded that patients in both groups experience major restrictions in HRQL before transplantation. However, pretransplant non-CF patients experience more restrictions than CF patients. After LgTX, both groups of patients showed substantial improvement in HRQL, and this improvement was maintained until 31 months after LgTX.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Cystic Fibrosis / physiopathology
  • Cystic Fibrosis / surgery*
  • Female
  • Forced Expiratory Volume
  • Health Status Indicators
  • Humans
  • Lung Diseases / surgery
  • Lung Transplantation*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Postoperative Period
  • Prospective Studies
  • Quality of Life*