Perception of quality of life of people with drug addiction

  • Ana Célia Santos Centro Hospitalar de S.João e Escola Superior de Enfermage m do Porto
  • Graça Ferreira Pimenta Escola Superior de Enfermagem do Porto
  • Célia Brito Santos Escola Superior de Enfermagem do Porto
Keywords: Substance-related disorders, Alcoholism, Quality of life


Introduction: Drug addiction affects many people’s lives and statistical data demonstrate the extent of the problem, which usually begins at an early age and is maintained throughout life, with implications for health and quality of life (QOL).

Objectives: To evaluate the perception of QOL of people with addictive problems; to compare the perception of QOL between the dependents of illicit drugs and alcohol; to evaluate the differences between the perception of QOL in terms of sociodemographic, health and treatment variables.

Methods: A quantitative, descriptive and cross-sectional study was carried out with a sample of 108 people, mostly males, with a mean age of 45 years and low schooling, with a long history of substance use, especially in poly-consumption, beginning on early ages and undergoing treatment in the District of Porto. To evaluate the perception of QOL, the Quality of Life Index (QLI), Portuguese version, by Ferrans & Powers was used.

Results: Participants perceived their QOL as positive, with no differences according the type of chemical dependence (illicit drugs/alcohol); Female participants (p=0.01), non-active (p=0.006), who lived alone (p=0.002), had previous treatments (p=0.01), and who continued to consume (p=0.001) presented lower values in the global QLI scores.

Conclusions: The aim of this study was to evaluate the perception of QOL of people with drug dependence, and to identify groups with greater vulnerability, in order to plan more effective intervention programmes.

Author Biographies

Ana Célia Santos, Centro Hospitalar de S.João e Escola Superior de Enfermage m do Porto

Especialista e Mestre em Enfermagem de Saúde Mental e Psiquiatria.

Enfermeira no serviço de Imunohemoterapia do CHSJ e Assistente convidada na Escola Superior de Enfermagem do Porto.

Graça Ferreira Pimenta, Escola Superior de Enfermagem do Porto

Professora Coordenadora da Escola Superior de Enfermagem do Porto.

Doutora em Psicologia pela FPCE-UP.


2.º autor

Célia Brito Santos, Escola Superior de Enfermagem do Porto

Professora Coordenadora da Escola Superior de Enfermagem do Porto.

Doutora em Psicologia pela FPCE - UP.

3.º autor (autor de correspondência)


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