The focus on quality of life in patients has led to an increase in production of formal outcome evaluations in otolaryngology-head and neck surgery. Health-related quality of life outcome instruments may evaluate physical, mental, and social function for a variety of clinical topics. Furthermore, these instruments may be patient or physician-reported and vary in completion time. The goal of this summary and website matrix is to help provide basic information on key outcome instruments in otolaryngology-head and neck surgery. Ideally, it will assist the clinician looking to learn more about these tools and implement them in their practice or educate the more seasoned researcher who wants to stay up-to-date on the key tools and supporting literature.
Outcome instruments in otolaryngology-head and neck surgery were compiled into a database from reviews1-3 and recommendations from the members of the AAO-HNSF. The list was pared into major categories (ie, laryngology, otology/neurotology, rhinology, head and neck surgery, facial plastics, sleep, and allergy) and distributed to members of the Outcomes Research and Evidence-Based Medicine Committee of the AAO-HNS for review. Volunteers from this committee formed subgroups by the major category and evaluated and selected 3 to 5 instruments to include in the database based on the following criteria:
Information about these instruments were further summarized, compiled, and translated to the website. This list is not meant to be exhaustive but rather a primer and foundation for members to access and implement quality of life tools in their practice. There may be tools that meet these criteria that have not been included as an oversight by the subgroups that developed the list. The list will be reviewed periodically and updated as appropriate.
Enhancing the Site and Creating a Database of Users
Additionally, if you are already collecting data with a quality of life tool, or plan to embark on collecting, we would like to know and start a database of this information (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Because this list does not currently include a formal process of evaluating and rating tools, inclusion of a tool on the list should not be interpreted as a formal endorsement by the AAO-HNSF.
We thank the American Thoracic Society whose Quality of Life Resource website was used as a model (http://www.thoracic.org)
The following individuals volunteered their time and contributed content expertise:
Marcella Bothwell, MD
Scott Brietzke, MD, MPH
Seth Cohen, MD, MPH
M. Boyd Gillespie, MD
Eric Kezirian, MD, MPH
Ron Mitchell, MD
Paul Leong, MD
Melissa Pynnonen, MD
Hassan Ramadan, MD, MSc
John Rhee, MD, MPH
Susan Waltzman, PhD
1Rhee JS, McMullin BT. Measuring outcomes in facial plastic surgery: a decade of progress. Curr Opin Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 2008;16:387-93.
2Meikle MB, Stewart BJ, Griest SE, Henry JA. Tinnitus outcomes assessment. Trends Amplif 2008;12:223-35.
3Hannley M. Patient-Reported Outcomes Assessment in the Practice Setting. ENToday 2008;3:8-11.
*Additional tool-specific references are noted below the individual description.