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The Correlation of Disability Severity and Quality of Life in Patients with Paraplegia
Quality of Life (QoL)
This study aims to investigate the correlation of disability severity and quality of life in patients with paraplegia after discharged from the hospitals. In addition, the study would also explore if there is difference of the quality of life caused by the employment condition and marriage status in patients with paraplegia. Methodology: Thirty-six patients with paraplegia, aged from 18 to 55, recruited from the rehabilitation department of a regional teaching hospital in central Taiwan and the Association of Spinal Cord Injury in that area, participated in this study. These participants are patients with normal cognition. The Functioning Scale of the Disability Evaluation System-Adult Version was used to measure the level of disability severity of the participants. In addition, the questionnaires called ‘Quality of Life of Spinal Cord Injury patients’ was used to measure their satisfaction degrees on the health-related quality of life of these participants. The researcher employed Pearson correlation coefficient (γ) to understand the correlation of disability severity and quality of life for these participants. The t test was used to analyze the difference in Quality of Life between the employment condition and marital status of these participants. The results indicated that there is low to medium negative correlation between disability severity and quality of life in the paraplegia patients. Second, the employed paraplegia patients show higher scores in “Physical Health Category” and “Environmental Category” of quality of life than the unemployed ones. However, there were no significant differences in other domains of quality of life between employed and unemployed paraplegia. Besides, the unmarried paraplegia patients show higher socres in “Physical Health Category” of quality of life than the married paraplegia patients. It also makes no major differences for the other five domains. In conclusion, the paraplegia patients’ sense of the dissatisfaction on “the Environmental Category” in quality of life will affect their social participation as well as their employment. The researcher believes that promoting these patients’ social participation and employment probably can enhance the quality of life for patients with paraplegia. Therefore, the researcher holds the viewpoint that these factors such as offering barrier-free environment and facilities, proper assistive devices or other personal assistance, social participation, and being employed caninfluence the quality of life in patients with paraplegia.
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