The feasibility and responsiveness of the health utilities index in patients with early-stage breast cancer: A prospective longitudinal study
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BACKGROUND: The health utilities index (HUI3) is a health measurement instrument based on individuals' preferences for different health states. Breast cancer (BC) is common, with a high proportion of long-term survivors, making evaluation of treatment effects important. Feasibility and responsiveness of HUI3 was compared to the short-form 36 (SF-36) in patients with BC. METHODS: HUI3 and SF-36 were administered eight times: at initial surgical consultation, 1 week before surgery; 1 week, 3, 6, 12, 18, and 24 months after surgery. Effect size, analysis of variance, and Pearson product moment correlations were calculated. BC data were compared to normative values. RESULTS: Eighty-five patients were enrolled. Ninety-one percent of planned assessments were completed. HUI3 showed significant responsiveness (P < 0.01) after surgery and during recovery. HUI3 scores correlated with SF-36 scores. Comparison to normative data demonstrated the significant detrimental effect of BC diagnosis. Results showed long-term effects of treatment on physical health and positive effects on mental/emotional health in BC survivors. CONCLUSION(S): HUI3 was found to be feasible and responsive in our cohort of BC patients. Changes in HUI3 values over time, and compared to normative data, paralleled SF-36 scores. HUI3 is a valuable tool in health-related quality of life and cost-utility studies in patients with BC.