How does systemic sclerosis (SSc) affect quality of life?

Updated: Apr 16, 2021
  • Author: Robert A Schwartz, MD, MPH; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
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The undeniable impact of systemic sclerosis on quality of life underscores the need for a biopsychosocial approach to the clinical management. Orofacial manifestations need to be considered. [12] Timely detection of psychosocial difficulties and appropriate psychological or psychiatric intervention are also important steps toward better adherence to medical treatment. [13] Not surprisingly, the prevalence of depressive symptoms were evaluated as high and were independently associated with pain, fatigue, social support, emotion-focused coping, helplessness, and fear of progression. [14, 15] Psychosocial factors associated with depressive symptoms merit attention.

A Canadian study assessed the World Health Organization Disability Assessment Schedule II (WHODAS II) as a valid measure of quality of life in systemic sclerosis patients. Results suggested the WHODAS II has good psychometric properties and is a valid measure of health-related quality of life in patients with systemic sclerosis. [16]

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