Multivariate analysis of quality of life outcome for nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients after treatment

Fu Min Fang*, Wen Ling Tsai, Tsair Fwu Lee, Kuan Cho Liao, Hui Chun Chen, Hsuan Chih Hsu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

46 Scopus citations


Purpose: The study analyzed the prognostic factors of quality of life (QoL) for patients with nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) after treatment, with focusing on the therapeutic benefits of the technological advances in radiotherapy (RT). Materials and methods: A cross-sectional investigation was conducted to assess the QoL of 356 NPC patients with cancer-free survival of more than 2 years. Among them, 106 patients were treated by two-dimensional RT (2DRT), 108 by 2DRT plus three-dimensional conformal RT (3DCRT) boost, 58 by 3DCRT alone, and 84 by intensity-modulated RT (IMRT). The QoL was assessed by the EORTC QLQ-C30 questionnaire and QLQ-H&N35 module. The clinical difference of QoL scores between groups was calculated using Cohen's D coefficient. Results: We found NPC survivors who had a higher education level or annual family income and who had received more advanced RT treatments had better QoL outcomes. Compared with 2DRT, the impact of 3DCRT was small on most scales and moderate (Cohen's D: 0.53-0.67) on emotional functioning, pain, and mouth opening; the impact of IMRT was moderate on nine scales and large (Cohen's D: 0.80-0.88) on swallowing, social eating, teeth, and mouth opening. Conclusions: In addition to socioeconomic levels, advances in RT technique played a significant role in improving QoL of NPC patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)263-269
Number of pages7
JournalRadiotherapy and Oncology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 11 2010


  • Intensity-modulated radiotherapy
  • Nasopharyngeal carcinoma
  • Quality of life


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