Association of health-related quality of life with gender in patients with B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia

Support Care Cancer. 2013 Oct;21(10):2853-60. doi: 10.1007/s00520-013-1854-z. Epub 2013 Jun 8.


Purpose: This analysis examined associations between gender and health-related quality of life (HRQOL) in patients with B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) as they initiate therapy for CLL outside the clinical trial setting.

Methods: Baseline data were collected as part of Connect® CLL Registry, a prospective observational study initiated in community, academic, and government centers. Patient demographics and clinical characteristics were provided by clinicians. Patients reported HRQOL using the Brief Fatigue Inventory (BFI), EQ-5D, and Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-Leukemia (FACT-Leu). Mean scores were analyzed, with statistical significance of differences determined by ANOVA. Multivariate analysis also considered age and line of therapy.

Results: Baseline HRQOL data were available for 1,140 patients: 710 (62 %) men and 430 (38 %) women from 161 centers. Patients were predominantly white (89 %) with mean age 69 ± 11 years. Women reported significantly worse global fatigue (P <0.0001), fatigue severity (P <0.0001), and fatigue-related interference (P = 0.0005) versus men (BFI). Pain/discomfort (P = 0.0077), usual activities (P = 0.0015), and anxiety/depression (P = 0.0117) were significantly worse in women than in men (EQ-5D). With women reporting a better social/family score (P = 0.0238) and men reporting a better physical score (P = 0.0002), the mean FACT-G total score did not differ by gender. However, the mean FACT-Leu total score was better among men versus women (P = 0.0223), primarily because the mean leukemia subscale score was significantly better among men (P <0.0001). Multivariate analysis qualitatively confirmed these findings.

Conclusions: Connect® CLL Registry results indicate that significant differences exist in certain HRQOL domains, as women reported greater levels of fatigue and worse functioning in physical domains.

Trial registration: NCT01081015.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Depression / etiology
  • Fatigue / etiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Leukemia, Lymphocytic, Chronic, B-Cell / physiopathology*
  • Leukemia, Lymphocytic, Chronic, B-Cell / psychology*
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prospective Studies
  • Quality of Life
  • Sex Factors

Associated data