We aim to design a tool to assess the impact of recurrent urinary tract infection (rUTI) on quality of life (QoL) in adult women, given the notable absence of an established instrument for this purpose.
Best practice guidelines in health-related survey design were reviewed. A literature review informed creation of an interview guide. Following ethical approval, 10 female patients (23-38 years) with rUTI were invited to participate in phase 1 of questionnaire design; all agreed. Individual semi-structured interviews were conducted exploring the impact of rUTI on patients’ QoL. Interviews were repeated with 5 staff members (3 urology nurses and 2 consultant urologists). Responses were recorded and thematic analysis performed, to inform the design of a new questionnaire. A further 10 patients were recruited to assess feasibility of completion.
All participants found available questionnaires unfit for assessment of rUTI-related QoL. Multiple themes emerged as integral to an rUTI questionnaire, including: frequency of UTIs, duration of symptoms, time to full recovery, specific symptoms of UTI, constitutional symptoms, impact on work/education, impact on leisure activities, impact on interpersonal relationships, impact on sexual relationships, psychological aspects and implications of treatment. Data saturation was reached. Based on responses, the Recurrent Urinary tract infection Health and Functional Impact Questionnaire (RUHFI-Q) was drafted, comprising 10 domains and 16 items.
We propose a novel self-administered questionnaire, the RUHFI-Q, as an instrument to standardize evaluation of the QoL impact of rUTI in a population of premenopausal women. Further validation studies are in progress.