Background: Health-related quality of life (HRQoL) instruments are used increasingly. In order to assign clinical meaning to HRQoL scores, the interpretation of instruments is essential but lagging in dermatology.
Objective: To establish a clinical interpretation of the Skin Cancer Quality of Life questionnaire (SCQoL), a newly validated HRQoL instrument for patients with non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC), using an anchor-based method, and to test the responsiveness.
Methods: Receiver-operating characteristic analysis was used to propose clinically meaningful cut-off scores for SCQoL including 101 patients with NMSC.
Results: The following bands were established: score 0-3 corresponds to no impairment, 4-6 corresponds to mild impairment, 7-10 to moderate impairment and 11-27 to severe impairment of HRQoL. Testing the responsiveness shows a moderate effect size and significantly lower scores only for the domain emotion and the global item.
Conclusion: Using proposed clinical cut-off scores for SCQoL may help clinicians in their decision-making, help monitoring clinical improvement and classify patients just as e.g. the Dermatology Life Quality Index can.