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Differences in Health Related Quality of Life in a Sample of Spanish Menopausal Women With and Without Obesity

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Llaneza P|Iñarrea J|Gonzalez C|Alonso A|Arnott I|Ferrer-Barriendos J

Maturitas 58 (2007) 387–394

Objective: To investigate whether body mass index, abdominal obesity or fat distribution in postmenopausal women influence their quality of Life.

Subjects /Methods: A cross-sectional study was carried out on 250 postmenopausal women (age: 50–64 years), with intact uterus and ovaries, sexually active, and non-hormone therapy users. Various anthropometric measurements were considered and a specific health-related quality of life (HR-QoL) instrument, the Cervantes scale, was performed.

Results: Thirty-three women were not included as they refused to participate in the study, had chronic disease such as hypertension, diabetes type 2, depression or did not answer all the scale items, so 217 patients were evaluated. According with BMI values, 34% of women were obese, 46.1% were in overweight, 19.8% were in normal weight and there were not underweight women. Any consistent relation was found between BMI and global values of HR-QoL, but obese women were diagnosed with “high level of problems” in the “psychical domain” and in the “sexuality domain”. This difference in “sexuality domain” was also appreciated in women with abdominal obesity. Fat or lean mass was not correlated with HR-QoL.

Conclusion: In our study, obesity did not affect the global HR-QoL in Spanish postmenopausal women, but could have an influence on the psychical and sexual domains. Others anthropometric measurements are not associated with changes in HR-QoL. Additional research with HR-QoL specific and validated instruments and with a longitudinal design seems necessary to confirm our results.

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