2014. Health-Related Quality of Life in Veterans & Non-Veterans with HIV/AIDS
Joseph M Mrus, MD, MSc, Cincinnati VAMC and University of Cincinnati, AC Leonard, University of Cincinnati, MS Yi,
University of Cincinnati, SN Sherman,
University of Cincinnati, S Fultz,
VA Connecticut Healthcare System, AC Justice,
VA Connecticut Healthcare System, KL Mandell,
University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, CM Puchalski,
George Washington University, J Tsevat,
Cincinnati VAMC and University of Cincinnati
Objectives: To compare health-related quality of life (HRQoL) of veterans and non-veterans with HIV/AIDS.
Methods: We assessed health status (HAT-QoL overall function), health values (rating scale, time tradeoff, standard gamble), and HIV-related symptoms (HIV Symptoms Index) in a cohort of 100 veterans and 350 non-veterans with HIV/AIDS from 2 VA and 2 university-based sites in 3 cities in 2002 and 2003. We performed descriptive statistics, univariate assessments, and linear regression.
Results: Veterans and non-veterans had similar mean CD4 cell counts and proportions on treatment. However, the veteran population was older (47.7 years vs. 42.0 years), included fewer females (3% vs. 17%), had more participants with a history of intravenous drug use (23% vs. 15%), and had more with unstable housing situations (14% vs. 6%) than the non-veterans. Veterans reported significantly poorer overall function (mean [SD]; 65.9 [17.2] vs. 71.9 [16.8]); lower rating scale (67.6 [21.7] vs. 73.5 [21.0]), time tradeoff (75.7 [37.4] vs. 89.0 [23.2]), and standard gamble (75.0 [35.8] vs. 83.2 [28.3]) values; and more symptom bother (31.1[17.2] vs. 26.7[16.8]) than non-veterans (p<0.05 for all comparisons). In multivariable analyses, HRQoL measures were associated with a number of demographic, clinical, and psychosocial factors; however, veteran status was significantly associated only with time tradeoff values (R-squared ranged from 0.22–0.52).
Conclusions: Veterans reported significantly poorer HRQoL than non-veterans, although, the HRQoL differences appear to be related to other factors and not to veteran status per se.
Impact: Future work should center on implementing interventions to improve the HRQoL of veterans with HIV/AIDS.