Quality of life among women with epilepsy during their reproductive years

Publication date: August 2018Source:Epilepsy & Behavior, Volume 85
Author(s): Ana Maria Cruz Santos, Humberto Castro-Lima, Marcos Antonio Almeida Matos, Milena Bastos Brito
PurposeThe purpose of this study was to assess the health-related quality of life (HRQoL) of women with epilepsy during their reproductive years.MethodA cross-sectional study comparing two groups, one with and another without epilepsy, was conducted. Semistructure questionnaires regarding socioeconomic, demographic, and clinical profiles were used. The HRQoL was measured using the Quality of Life in Epilepsy Inventory (QOLIE-31), for comparison within the group with epilepsy, and World Health Organization of Quality of Life (WHOQOL)-bref, for comparison between the groups with and without epilepsy. Statistical analysis was performed using Fisher’s exact test, Mann–Whitney test, and multivariate linear regression. A measure of significance was considered as p < 0.05.ResultsEighty women were included (40 with epilepsy and 40 without epilepsy) with mean age of 28.2 ± 6.51 years. Women of childbearing age with epilepsy tend to have lower quality of life than those without epilepsy (with epilepsy: 85.15 ± 13.50 vs. without epilepsy: 90.75 ± 12.17, p = 0.051). The groups were similar in relation to most sociodemographic characteristics, with the exception of the percentage of women with epilepsy outside the labor market (with epilepsy: 57.5% vs. without epilepsy: 30%, p = 0.012) and with clinical (with epilepsy: 27.5% vs. without epilepsy: 7.5%, p = 0.018) and psychiatric comorbidities (with epilepsy: 20% vs. without epilepsy: 0%, p = 0.003). However, logistic regression showed no influence of these variables on the HRQoL of women with epilepsy. The clinical variables associated with the worsening of HRQoL were seizure control and antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) adverse effects.ConclusionEpilepsy has a negative impact on the HRQoL of women of childbearing age, and the clinical variables controlling seizures and adverse effects of AEDs influenced HRQoL in this population.