Background: Gastric cancer (GC) is one of the leading causes of cancer-related death in Vietnam. Research on health-related quality of life of Vietnamese gastric cancer patients is still in its infancy.
Aim: To assess the health-related quality of life (HRQOL) of GC patients using the 15D instrument.
Materials and method: 182 Vietnamese gastric cancer patients were selected to be interviewed and their HRQOL was assessed using the generic 15D questionnaire. Tables regarding history, disease characteristics, and HRQOL of participants were formulated according to genders using STATA 12.0.
Results: The average age of the participants was 60.8 ± 11.6. The average time from diagnosis to the date of interview was 14.8 ± 8.4 months. The health-related quality of life (HRQOL) index score of gastric cancer patients using the 15D instrument was 0.92 ± 0.08, in which the "sexual activity" dimension had the lowest score of 0.66. Also, our study found several factors affecting HRQOL, including age, occupation, education, disease stage, treatment, and time from the date of diagnosis.
Conclusion: The 15D instrument was a suitable tool to assess Vietnamese gastric cancer patients' quality of life. Findings from the study suggest the importance of frequently measuring personal functioning and performance of GC patients as parts of QOL assessment during clinical examination. It also implies the needs for more focused policies on raising the overall quality of life of patients such as encouragement of periodical HQROL assessment and acknowledging HRQOL as a treatment/intervention goal besides the 5-year survival rate.