Context: To our knowledge, no authors have assessed health-related quality of life (HR-QOL) in participants with functional ankle instability (FAI). Furthermore, the relationships between measures of ankle functional limitation and HR-QOL are unknown.
Objective: To use the Short Form-36v2 Health Survey (SF-36) to compare HR-QOL in participants with or without FAI and to determine whether HR-QOL was related to functional limitation.
Design: Cross-sectional study.
Setting: Sports medicine research laboratory.
Patients or other participants: Sixty-eight participants with FAI (defined as at least 1 lateral ankle sprain and 1 episode of giveway per month) or without FAI were recruited (FAI group: n = 34, age = 25 ± 5 years, height = 1.71 ± 0.08 m, mass = 74.39 ± 12.78 kg, Cumberland Ankle Instability Tool score = 19.3 ± 4; uninjured [UI] group: n = 34, age = 23 ± 4 years, height = 1.69 ± 0.08 m, mass = 67.94 ± 11.27 kg, Cumberland Ankle Instability Tool score = 29.4 ± 1).
Main outcome measure(s): All participants completed the SF-36 as a measure of HR-QOL and the Foot and Ankle Ability Measure (FAAM) and the FAAM Sport version (FAAMS) as assessments of functional limitation. To compare the FAI and UI groups, we calculated multiple analyses of variance followed by univariate tests. Additionally, we correlated the SF-36 summary component scale and domain scales with the FAAM and FAAMS scores.
Results: Participants with FAI had lower scores on the SF-36 physical component summary (FAI = 54.4 ± 5.1, UI = 57.8 ± 3.7, P = .005), physical function domain scale (FAI = 54.5 ± 3.8, UI = 56.6 ± 1.2, P = .004), and bodily pain domain scale (FAI = 52.0 ± 6.7, UI = 58.5 ± 5.3, P < .005). Similarly, participants with FAI had lower scores on the FAAM (FAI = 93.7 ± 8.4, UI = 99.5 ± 1.4, P < .005) and FAAMS (FAI = 84.5 ± 8.4, UI = 99.8 ± 0.72, P < .005) than did the UI group. The FAAM score was correlated with the physical component summary scale (r = 0.42, P = .001) and the physical function domain scale (r = 0.61, P < .005). The FAAMS score was correlated with the physical function domain scale (r = 0.47, P < .005) and the vitality domain scale (r = 0.36, P = .002).
Conclusions: Compared with UI participants, those with FAI had less HR-QOL and more functional limitations. Furthermore, positive correlations were found between HR-QOL and functional limitation measures. This suggests that ankle impairment may reduce overall HR-QOL.