Health-related quality of life is dynamic in alcoholic hepatitis and responds to improvement in liver disease and reduced alcohol consumption

Abhishek Madathanapalli, Qing Tang, Craig Lammert, Niharika Samala, Vijay H. Shah, Arun Sanyal, Naga Chalasani, Archita P. Desai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: The impact of alcoholic hepatitis (AH) on health-related quality of life (HRQOL) remains inadequately described. We aimed to characterize HRQOL in AH and heavy drinkers (HD), and its associations with clinical variables and outcomes. Methods: This is a post hoc analysis of participants in the Translational Research and Evolving Alcoholic Hepatitis Treatment 001 study (NCT02172898). HRQOL was measured using Short Form Health Survey (SF-36). Mean SF-36 scores were compared in AH and HD with two-sample t-tests. Associations among clinical characteristics, 30-day mortality, and SF-36 mental and physical component scores (MC, PC) were investigated with generalized linear and logistic multivariate regression models. Trends of MC and PC scores were analyzed using one-way ANOVA. Results: Participants with AH (n = 258) and HD (n = 181) were similar demographically. AH cases had a mean Model for End-stage Liver Disease (MELD) score of 23 (7). AH cases had lower PC scores [37 (10) vs. 48 (11), p < 0.001] but higher MC scores [37 (13) vs. 32 (13), p < 0.001]. MC scores were independently associated with age, male gender, and daily alcohol consumption; PC scores were independently associated with age, BMI, alanine aminotransferase concentration, alkaline phosphatase concentration, white blood cell counts, and the presence of ascites. With each 5-point decrease in the baseline PC score, the adjusted odds of dying within 30 days increased by 26.7% (95% CI 1% to 46%). Over time, HRQOL in AH improved (day 0 to day 180 delta PC score: 4.5 ± 1.7, p = 0.008; delta MC score: 9.8 ± 2.0, p < 0.001). Participants with a MELD score <15 by day 180 had greater increases in PC scores than those with MELD score ≥15 (delta PC score 7.1 ± 1.8 vs. −0.7 ± 2.3, p = 0.009), while those abstinent by day 180 had greater increases in MC scores than those who were not abstinent (delta MC score 9.1 ± 1.8 vs. 2.8 ± 2.4, p = 0.044). Conclusions: HRQOL is poor in AH and HD in a domain-specific pattern. Independent of MELD score, lower baseline HRQOL is associated with higher 30-day mortality. Over time, HRQOL improves with greater gains seen in individuals with improved MELD scores and those who were abstinent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)252-261
Number of pages10
JournalAlcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2022


  • SF-36
  • alcoholic hepatitis
  • alcoholism
  • chronic liver disease
  • quality of life

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Toxicology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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