Quality of Care of Patients with Chronic Lymphoedema in GermanyHerberger K.a · Blome C.a · Sandner A.a · Altheide F.b · Heyer K.a · Münter K.C.c · Gottlieb W.R.d · Augustin M.a
aCVderm - German Center for Health Services Research in Dermatology, University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, bDermatology Practice, cPhlebology Practice and dLymphology Practice, Hamburg, Germany
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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.
© 2013 S. Karger AG, Basel
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