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Measuring quality of life after injury
  1. Ronan Lyons
  1. Correspondence to Professor Ronan Lyons, School of Medicine, Grove Building, Swansea University, Swansea SA2 8PP, UK; r.a.lyons{at}

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Injuries often result in a series of negative consequences for individuals, their families, close friends and wider society.1 Quality of life, or more specifically health-related quality of life, after injury is essentially a summary measure of the health impact of non-fatal injuries on individuals. It is most commonly measured using multi-attribute utility instruments (MAUIs), such as the EuroQol-5D (EQ-5D) or the Health Utility Index (HUI2, HUI3).2 3

MAUIs are standardised health-state classifications which can be used to produce a single utility score based on individuals' responses to questions on the impact of health conditions or injuries on their lives and the preferences of the general public for different health states. The utility scores are designed to range from 0 to 1, and together with information on the duration of health states are used to produce the ‘years lived with disability’ component of disability-adjusted life years (DALYs).4

There are two different approaches to calculating DALYs for injuries. One approach is to use panels of people to provide relative valuations of different health states based on a limited number of vignettes or idealised case descriptors—for example, the Global …

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