Academic journal article Iranian Journal of Public Health

Quality of Life in Elderly Iranian Population Using the QOL-Brief Questionnaire: A Systematic Review

Academic journal article Iranian Journal of Public Health

Quality of Life in Elderly Iranian Population Using the QOL-Brief Questionnaire: A Systematic Review

Article excerpt

Introduction

Population ageing is a common phenomenon that occurs due to increased life expectancy, improvement of the health care services, and decreased mortality rate. This phenomenon is observed in nearly all countries throughout the world (1, 2). According to a report by WHO in 2013, the global elderly population (aged 60 yr and over) increased from 9.2% in 1990 to 11.7% in 2013 and will reach 21.1% in 2050 (3).

According to the results of the National Population and Housing Census in 2011, the proportion of the elderly population of Iran has been 8.19% (4). Due to the increase in the elderly population in different societies, it is important to consider their primary needs, physical and mental health, and improvement of the quality of life (QOL). According to the WHO definition, the QOL is the understanding people from their position in life in terms of culture, appraisal, goals, hope, standards, and preferences (5). Several different tools are available to measure the QOL such as the SF-36 questionnaire, WHO-QOL-Brief questionnaire, Lipad questionnaire, etc. (6-8). The WHO-QOL-Brief can assess the quality of life in a variety of societies and population groups (6). This questionnaire has been standardized in many countries, so we could able to compare the quality of life in different populations. On the other hand, the age structure is rapidly changing in Iran, so we need to compare the QOL status between the Iranian elderly population and other developing countries.

So far, limited and sporadic studies have been conducted to investigate the QOL in the Iranian elderly population (9-16) and their results are inconsistent. This meta-analysis aimed to estimate the overall mean score of the QOL based on the Qol-Brief questionnaire in the elderly population of Iran.

Methods

Instrument

The WHOQOL-BREF is a standard tool for assessing the quality of life based on four domains of physical health, psychological health, social relationships and environmental health. The physical health domain includes energy and fatigue, pain and discomfort, sleep and rest. The psychological domain includes bodily image and appearance, negative feelings, positive feelings, self-esteem, thinking, learning, memory and concentration, religion /spirituality/personal beliefs. The social domain involves personal relationships, social support and sexual activity, and finally the environmental domain includes the financial resources, freedom, physical safety and security, health and social care, accessibility and quality of home environment, opportunities for acquiring new information and skills participation and opportunities for recreation/leisure, environment (pollution/noise/climate) and transport (6).

Searching

International and national databases were searched using following key words: "quality of life", "aging", "aged", "elderly" and "Iran". International databases including Medline, Scopus and Science Direct were searched up to Feb 2015. National databases including Science Information Database, MagIran, IranMedex and Irandoc were searched up to Feb 2015. Moreover, to obtain additional studies, the reference lists of all selected studies were scanned manually, and the authors of included studies were contacted.

Criteria for including studies

All cross-sectional studies addressed the QOL in the healthy Iranian elderly population using the WHO-QOL-BRIEF questionnaire were included irrespective of the time of the study and the language of the publication. The Iranian elderly population was considered the study population regardless of sex and age. The main outcome of interest was the mean scores of the domains of the quality of life.

Data extraction and management

Two authors (PCh. and ADI) screened the title and abstract of the retrieved citations independently; in the next stage, they reviewed the full text of the selected studies to extract the studies that met the inclusion criteria for this metaanalysis. …

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