Life satisfaction in patients with chronic musculoskeletal pain and its predictors

Qual Life Res. 2013 Feb;22(1):93-101. doi: 10.1007/s11136-012-0132-8. Epub 2012 Feb 20.


Purpose: To determine the life satisfaction of patients with chronic non-malignant musculoskeletal pain (CMP) compared to the general population (GP) and to identify predictors of life satisfaction.

Methods: Subjects were patients with CMP (n = 1,082) admitted to multidisciplinary rehabilitation and a general population sample (n = 506). Lisat-9 measures satisfaction with life as a whole and eight life domains. Physical, emotional and social functioning and pain intensity were assessed using the SF-36. Ordinal logistic regression was used to analyse differences between patients with CMP and the GP, and predictors of life satisfaction in patients with CMP.

Results: Compared to the general population, patients with CMP reported lower satisfaction with 'life as a whole', and with six life domains: self-care, leisure, vocational and financial situation, sex life and contacts with friends. In the CMP group, pain was associated with satisfaction with self-care, vocational situation, partnership, family life and contacts with friends. Marital status, age and mental health were associated with most satisfaction scores.

Conclusions: Compared to the general population, patients with CMP reported lower satisfaction with 'life as a whole' and most life domains. The most consistent predictors of life satisfaction were marital status, mental health, vitality and pain.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living / psychology
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Chronic Pain / psychology*
  • Chronic Pain / rehabilitation
  • Female
  • Health Status*
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Mental Health
  • Middle Aged
  • Musculoskeletal Pain / psychology*
  • Musculoskeletal Pain / rehabilitation
  • Netherlands
  • Personal Satisfaction*
  • Population Surveillance
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Quality of Life*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Young Adult