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Open Access Research article

Health-related quality of life and influencing factors among rural left-behind wives in Liuyang, China

Jinyao Yi12, Bin Zhong13 and Shuqiao Yao12*

Author Affiliations

1 Medical Psychological Institute, Second Xiangya Hospital, Central South University, NO139 Renmin Road, Changsha 410011, China

2 Key Laboratory of Psychiatry and Mental Health of Hunan Province, Central South University, NO 139 Renmin Road, Changsha 410011, P R China

3 Hunan Province Technology Institute of Psychiatry, Central South University, NO 139 Renmin Road, Changsha 410011, P R China

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BMC Women's Health 2014, 14:67  doi:10.1186/1472-6874-14-67

Published: 14 May 2014

Abstract

Background

In China, the number of left-behind wives in rural areas has reached 47 million. Left-behind wives might have more psychological stress and lower life quality. This study was to examine the health-related quality of life and influencing social and cognitive factors in a sample of left-behind wives in rural areas of China.

Methods

The demographic data questionnaire, the Short Form 36 Health Survey Scale, Center for Epidemiological Studies Depression Scale, Perceived Social Support Scale, Simplified Coping Style Questionnaire, and Perceived Stress Scale were completed by a sample of 1,893 left-behind wives and 969 non-left-behind wives.

Results

Left-behind wives had lower scores on physical component summary (PCS), mental component summary (MCS) , and all the eight subscales of the SF-36 than non-left-behind wives (P < 0.05), especially on the role limitations due to emotional problems (RE) and on MCS. Compared to non-left-behind wives, left-behind wives scored higher in depression, stress, and passive coping styles, and scored significantly lower in social support and active coping styles. Logistic regression analysis showed that the status of being left behind, age, education years, monthly income, employment, physical health status, active coping styles, and depression were influencing factors on the PCS of rural women, whereas the status of being left behind, monthly income, physical health status, sense of marriage security, stress, social support, passive coping styles, and depression were influencing factors on the MCS of rural women.

Conclusions

Left-behind wives scored lower on health-related quality of life than non-left-behind wives. Low health-related quality of life was associated with left behind status, older age, less education, low monthly income, unemployment, bad physical health status, passive coping styles, low social support, high level of stress, and high depression.

Keywords:
Left-behind wives; Rural area; Health-related quality of life; Cross-sectional study