The EORTC QLQ-C30 quality of life (QOL) questionnaire is designed to measure cancer patients’ physical, psychological, and social functions. There are few reports on the impact of radiotherapy (RT) on QOL; thus, we investigated QOL changes during the RT period and 1 month after RT.
We scored EORTC QLQ-C30 (version 3.0) questionnaires from 66 patients. The questionnaire contained 30 items, including 1 item on financial concerns, a global health domain, 5 functional domains, 3 symptom domains, and 5 single-symptom items. Assessments were performed before RT, at the end of the day after RT, and 1 month after RT. Correlations between the patients’ characteristics (e.g., age, sex, organ, RT response) and QOL change were evaluated.
No specific patient characteristic significantly correlated with a QOL change during RT. In 15 QLQ-C30 items, those items in which the change in score achieved statistical significance (P < 0.05) were the following: physical function was improved from the end of RT to 1 month after RT; role function worsened from the end of RT to 1 month after RT; and emotional function worsened from the start of RT to 1 month after RT.
The QOL was poorest at the end of RT. If treatment was completed, physical function improved, but role function and emotional function worsened just 1 month after treatment. For role and emotional function, observation by medical staff is necessary.