Objective: To identify health-related quality of life (HRQOL) domains of importance to multiethnic Asian systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) patients, to identify content gaps in existing SLE-specific HRQOL measures, and to determine whether the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS) item banks could serve as a core set of questions for HRQOL assessment among SLE patients. Methods: English-speaking patients with physician-diagnosed SLE from a specialist clinic in a tertiary care hospital in Singapore and a patient support group were recruited. Thematic analysis was performed to distill themes from transcripts through open coding by 2 independent coders and axial coding for refinement of categories. Items from 3 existing SLE-specific measures and PROMIS Version 1.0 Item Banks were compared with identified subthemes. Results: Twenty-seven female and 2 male participants (21 Chinese, 4 Malay, 3 Indian, 1 other) ages 23-62 years participated in 6 focus groups and 2 individual interviews, respectively. Twenty-one domains and 92 subthemes were identified. Domains of family, relationships, stigma and discrimination, and freedom were unaddressed by existing SLE-specific measures. Forty subthemes from 14 domains were addressed by the PROMIS Version 1.0 Item Banks (Physical Function, Pain, Fatigue, Sleep Disturbance, Sleep-Related Impairment, Anger, Anxiety, and Depression banks). Conclusion: Family and stigma and discrimination (identified as content gaps) may be accentuated in the Asian sociocultural context. PROMIS item banks have tremendous potential to serve as a core set of items for HRQOL assessment in SLE patients. Additional items may be written to fill the gaps in existing PROMIS item banks.
ASJC Scopus subject areas