Background: The impact of sarcopenia on quality of life is currently assessed by generic tools. However, these tools may not detect subtle effects of this specific condition on quality of life.
Objective: The aim of this study was to develop a sarcopenia-specific quality of life questionnaire (SarQoL, Sarcopenia Quality of Life) designed for community-dwelling elderly subjects aged 65 years and older.
Settings: Participants were recruited in an outpatient clinic in Liège, Belgium.
Subjects: Sarcopenic subjects aged 65 years or older.
Methods: The study was articulated in the following four stages: (i) Item generation-based on literature review, sarcopenic subjects' opinion, experts' opinion, focus groups; (ii) Item reduction-based on sarcopenic subjects' and experts' preferences; (iii) Questionnaire generation-developed during an expert meeting; (iv) Pretest of the questionnaire-based on sarcopenic subjects' opinion.
Results: The final version of the questionnaire consists of 55 items translated into 22 questions rated on a 4-point Likert scale. These items are organised into seven domains of dysfunction: Physical and mental health, Locomotion, Body composition, Functionality, Activities of daily living, Leisure activities and Fears. In view of the pretest, the SarQoL is easy to complete, independently, in ∼10 min.
Conclusions: The first version of the SarQoL, a specific quality of life questionnaire for sarcopenic subjects, has been developed and has been shown to be comprehensible by the target population. Investigations are now required to test the psychometric properties (internal consistency, test-retest reliability, divergent and convergent validity, discriminant validity, floor and ceiling effects) of this questionnaire.
Keywords: older people; quality of life; questionnaire; sarcopenia.
© The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the British Geriatrics Society.