Otol Neurotol 2010 Aug;31(6):977-84
School of Psychology and Psychiatry, Monash University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.
Objective: The main aim of this study was to examine differences in quality of life (QoL) among acoustic neuroma patients across the management options of microsurgery, radiation, and observation. Additional aims were to describe QoL and investigate management, medical, and demographic factors that predicted QoL in this patient group.
Study Design: Cross-sectional design, using a postal questionnaire.
Setting: Tertiary referral centers.
Patients: Participants included 180 adults diagnosed with, or treated for, a unilateral acoustic neuroma within 5 years of questionnaire distribution. The mean age of participants was 56.5 years, and 107 (59.4%) were female.
Intervention(s): Patients' acoustic neuromas were managed with microsurgery, radiation, or observation.
Main Outcome Measure(s): Current QoL was measured using the Short Form 12 Version 2 (SF-12), and postmanagement changes in QoL were assessed with the Glasgow Benefit Inventory (GBI).
Results: No significant differences in SF-12 scores were found across microsurgery, radiation, and observation patients. However, microsurgery patients reported more deterioration on the GBI general well-being subscale than radiation patients and more improvement in the GBI social support scale than observation patients. Number of symptoms was a consistent predictor of SF-12 and GBI scores.
Conclusion: This is only the second study to use multivariate statistical techniques and a large sample to examine QoL across the acoustic neuroma management options of microsurgery, radiation, and observation. There were few differences in QoL outcomes across management groups. Number of symptoms was an important factor in current QoL and postmanagement changes in QoL.