Measuring quality of life among HIV-infected women using a culturally adapted questionnaire in Rakai district, Uganda

T. C. Mast, G. Kigozi, F. Wabwire-Mangen, R. Black, N. Sewankambo, D. Serwadda, R. Gray, M. Wawer, A. W. Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

94 Scopus citations


To examine self-reported quality of life and health status of HIV-infected women and a comparison sample of HIV-uninfected women in rural Uganda, we culturally adapted a Lugandan version of the Medical Outcomes Survey-HIV (MOS-HIV). We administered a cross-sectional survey among 803 women (239 HIV-positive and 564 HIV-negative) enrolled in a community study to evaluate maternal and child health in Rakai District, Uganda. The interview took 20 minutes and was generally well-accepted. Reliability coefficients were >0.70, except for role functioning, energy and cognitive function. MOS-HIV scores for HIV-positive women were correlated with increasing number of physical symptoms and higher HIV viral load. Compared to HIV-negative women, HIV-positive women reported lower scores than HIV-negative women for general health perceptions, physical functioning, pain, energy, role functioning, social functioning, mental health and overall quality of life (p all <0.01). Substantial impairment was noted among women reporting ≥4 symptoms. In summary, HIV-positive women reported significantly poorer functioning and well-being than HIV-negative women. We conclude that patient-reported measures of health status and related concepts may provide a feasible, reliable and valid method to assess the impact of HIV/AIDS and future therapeutic interventions to improve patient outcomes in rural Africa.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)81-94
Number of pages14
JournalAIDS Care - Psychological and Socio-Medical Aspects of AIDS/HIV
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Social Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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