Quality of Care of Patients with Chronic Lymphoedema in Germany

By February 6, 2016Lymphedema, Treatment

Quality of Care of Patients with Chronic Lymphoedema in Germany

Herberger K, Blome C, Sandner A, Altheide F, Heyer K, Mnter KC, Gottlieb WR, Augustin M; 2013

Synopsis: This paper evaluates the quality of care of lymphoedema in Germany, and finds that many patients are not treated properly according to medical guidelines.

Abstract: BACKGROUND: The management of lymphoedema is complex and should be based on guidelines. To date, no data assessing quality of care in lymphoedema in Germany are available.

OBJECTIVE: We aimed at evaluating the quality of care of lymphoedema in the metropolitan area of Hamburg using guideline-based indicators.

METHODS: Cross-sectional, community-based study including patients with lymphoedema. Assessment included a structured interview, clinical examination and patient-reported outcomes. Quality indicators derived from guidelines by a Delphi consensus were applied.

RESULTS: 348 patients (median age 60.5 years) with lymphoedema (66.4%), lipoedema (9.5%) or combined oedema (24.1%) were included. 86.4% performed compression therapy, 85.6% received lymphatic drainage. On average 55.0% of the quality of care criteria were met; 64.8% were satisfied with care. The distribution curve of the health care index was almost normal. Treatment by specialists led to a higher quality of care index.

CONCLUSION: Although overall quality of care in lymphoedema is fair, many patients are not treated properly according to guidelines.

APA Citation: Herberger, K., Blome, C., Sandner, A., Altheide, F., Heyer, K., & Mnter, K. et al. (2013). Quality of Care of Patients with Chronic Lymphoedema in Germany. Dermatology, 226(3), 238-246. http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000349988

AMA Citation: Herberger K, Blome C, Sandner A et al. Quality of Care of Patients with Chronic Lymphoedema in Germany. Dermatology. 2013;226(3):238-246. doi:10.1159/000349988.