Health  Vol.8 No.12 , September 2016
Quality of Life in Heroin Users Attending Substitution Treatment: A Multicenter Study in Italy
Abstract: Quality of life (QoL) is an important measure to verify the effectiveness of therapy in substance use disorders (SUD). In this cross-sectional, multicenter study QoL has been measured in 1057 heroin dependents attending SerDs (“Servizi per le Dipendenze”, Italian National Health System Services for Addictions) and has been correlated with demographic variables and drug treatment. QoL has been measured by using GHQ-12 (12-item General Health Questionnaire), a self-administered questionnaire whose value is inversely correlated with the QoL. The median value of GHQ-12 in the study population was 12 (interquartile range [IQ] 9 - 18): 640 patients (60.6%) scored <15 which relates with a sufficiently good QoL, 257 (24.3%) scored between 15 - 20, and 160 (15.1%) scored >20 points at the GHQ-12, which relates with a bad QoL. Female population showed higher GHQ12 scores when compared to male population (14 [IQ 9 - 19] vs. 12 [IQ 9 - 17], p = 0.03). Similarly, unemployed patients showed higher GHQ12 scores when compared to employed patients (15 [IQ 10 - 20] vs. 12 [IQ 8 - 16], p < 0.00). Unemployment (OR 2.09, CI 95% 1.5 - 3.0, p < 0.00), non-opioid psy-chopharmacological treatment (OR 1.82, CI 95% 1.3 - 2.6, p = 0.00) and substitution therapy with buprenorphine (OR 0.55, CI 95% 0.3 - 0.8, p = 0.01) were independent predictors of GHQ-12 >20. Results show that most of patients receiving care for heroin dependence at SerDs have a positive assessment of their quality of life, and that being unemployed and having a dual diagnosis are predictors of poor QoL. Besides, data suggest that assuming buprenorphine could be a protective factor for QoL.
Cite this paper: Fiumana, V. , Zamboni, L. , Mazza, M. , Janiri, L. , Cibin, M. , GICS, &. and Lugoboni, F. (2016) Quality of Life in Heroin Users Attending Substitution Treatment: A Multicenter Study in Italy. Health, 8, 1195-1208. doi: 10.4236/health.2016.812123.

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