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Parameters influencing health-related quality of life after severe trauma: a systematic review (part II).

INTRODUCTION: It is increasingly recognized that health-related quality of life (HRQoL) is a relevant outcome to study in populations comprising severely injured patients. Although some studies have readily demonstrated a compromised HRQoL in those patients, evidence regarding factors that predict HRQoL is scarce. This hinders attempts to prepare patient-specific plans that may aid in revalidation and improved life satisfaction. In this review, we present identified predictors of HRQoL in patients that have suffered severe trauma.

METHODS: The search strategy included a database search until the 1st of January 2022 in the Cochrane Library, EMBASE, PubMed, and Web of Science, and reference checking. Studies were eligible for inclusion when (HR)QoL was studied in patients with major, multiple, or severe injury and/or polytrauma, as defined by authors by means of an Injury Severity Score (ISS) cut-off value. The results will be discussed in a narrative manner.

RESULTS: A total of 1583 articles were reviewed. Of those, 90 were included and used for analysis. In total, 23 possible predictors were identified. The following parameters predicted reduced HRQoL in severely injured patients and came forward in at least more than three studies: higher age, female gender, lower extremity injuries, higher rate of injury severity, lower achieved educational level, presence of (pre-existing) comorbidities and mental illness, longer duration of hospital stay, and high level of disability.

CONCLUSION: Age, gender, injured body region, and severity of injury were found to be good predictors of health-related quality of life in severely injured patients. A patient-centered approach, based on individual, demographic, and disease-specific predictors, is highly recommended.

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