The impact of spontaneous intracranial hypotension on social life and health-related quality of life

Christopher Marvin Jesse, Levin Häni, Christian Fung, Christian Thomas Ulrich, Ralph T Schär, Tomas Dobrocky, Eike Immo Piechowiak, Johannes Goldberg, Christoph Josef Schankin, Harri Sintonen, Jürgen Beck, Andreas Raabe
OBJECTIVE Spontaneous intracranial hypotension (SIH), which is often caused by a spinal cerebrospinal fluid leak, is an important cause of disabling headaches. Many patients report devastating changes in their quality of life because of their symptoms. This study aimed to evaluate the impact of SIH on patients' social/ working life and health-related quality of life (HRQoL). METHODS We included consecutive patients with proven SIH treated at our institution from January 2013 to May 2020.
more » ... s were contacted and asked to complete the 15D questionnaire for the collection of HRQoL data and to provide additional information on their social life status. RESULTS Of 112 patients, 79 (70.5%) returned the questionnaire and were included in the analysis. Of those, 69 were treated surgically (87.3%), and 10 were managed non-operatively (12.7%). Twenty-five (31.6%) patients reported a severe impact on their partnership, 32 (41.5%) reported a moderate or severe impact on their social life. Forty (54.8%) patients reported sick leave for more than 3 months. The mean 15D score was 0.890 (± 0.114) and significantly impaired compared to an age- and sex-matched general population (p = 0.001), despite treatment. Patients with residual SIH-symptoms (36, 45.6%) had significantly impaired HRQoL compared to those without any residual symptoms (41, 51.9%) (p < 0.001). CONCLUSION SIH had a notable impact on the patients' social life and HRQoL. It caused long periods of incapacity for work, and is therefore, associated with high economic costs. Although all patients were appropriately treated, reduced HRQoL persisted after treatment, underlining the chronic character of this disease.
doi:10.48350/170718 fatcat:kjhw65yxpbb4dlyzpue3v2g6vq