Background: Health-related quality of life (HRQoL) is an essential outcome of health care, but there is no gold standard of HRQoL measurement. We investigated the impact of major chronic conditions on HRQoL using 15D and EQ-5D in a representative sample of Finns.
Methods: Information on chronic somatic conditions was obtained by interviews. Psychiatric disorders were diagnosed using a structured interview (M-CIDI). Tobit and CLAD regression analysis was used to estimate the impact of conditions on HRQoL at the individual and population level.
Main results: Adjusted for other conditions and sociodemographic variables, Parkinson's disease had the largest negative impact on HRQoL at the individual level, followed by anxiety disorders, depressive disorders and arthrosis of the hip and knee. Based on prevalence, arthrosis of the hip or knee, depression, back problems and urinary incontinence caused the greatest loss of HRQoL at the population level. The results obtained with the two HRQoL measures differed markedly for some conditions and the EQ-5D results also varied with the regression method used.
Conclusions: Musculoskeletal disorders are associated with largest losses of HRQoL in the Finnish population, followed by psychiatric conditions. Different HRQoL measures may systematically emphasize different conditions.