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Quality of life

What is quality of life?

Quality of life refers to an individual’s sense of satisfaction with their circumstances. This can be measured subjectively via interview and objectively via measures of overall health, social and material well-being and access to resources and opportunities. A key focus of quality of life research in schizophrenia is to identify factors that influence or predict a person’s satisfaction with their circumstances, which may then provide targets for therapeutic focus to improve quality of life.

What is the evidence for quality of life?

Moderate to high quality evidence finds large effects of poorer psychological, physical, and social quality of life in people with schizophrenia compared to people without a psychiatric disorder. There were small to medium-sized associations between increased symptom severity and poorer quality of life.

On objective quality of life rating scales, small associations were found between better quality of life and better verbal ability, vigilance, short-term or working memory, processing speed, and executive functioning. On subjective quality of life rating scales, there was a small association between better quality of life and better letter fluency, but poorer verbal ability, and slower processing speed.

Moderate to low quality evidence finds the best predictors of better well-being are engagement in meaningful leisure activities and having strong social networks.

August 2020

Last updated at: 11:38 pm, 17th August 2020
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Fact Sheet Technical Commentary

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Title Colour Legend:
Green - Topic summary is available.
Orange - Topic summary is being compiled.
Red - Topic summary has no current systematic review available.