Quality of Life in Croatian Metastatic Melanoma Patients
The aim of this study was to examine the quality of life (QoL) in 40 Croatian metastatic melanoma patients who had completed at least first-line treatment and to see if there was a correlation between QoL parameters and serum lactate dehydrogenase (LDH). LDH levels were measured and all patients clinically examined between April and September 2013. Two QoL questionnaires were used for patient self-evaluation: the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of life Questionnaire (EORTC QLQ-C30) and the Dartmouth Primary Care Cooperative Research Network and the World Organization of National Colleges, Academies, and Academic Associations of General Practitioners/Family Physicians (COOP/WONCA) charts. The average EORTC QLQ-C30 score for global health status (GHS) was 41.204. The average scores for functional scales were high, with the exception of emotional functioning (65.02). Blood LDH levels positively correlated with the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) status (r=0.415; p<0.01) and pain (r=0.345; p<0.05), but not with any functional or COOP/WONCA scores. Global health status (GHS) positively correlated with patient age at the time of evaluation (r=0.386; p<0.05) and age at the time when metastatic disease had been diagnosed (r=0.366; p<0.05). Quality of life for the studied group of metastatic melanoma patients in Croatia can be considered generally good, with the exception of emotional functioning and symptoms of fatigue, dispnoea, insomnia, and financial difficulties.