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Epidemiological, clinical and endoscopic features of epistaxis severity and quality of life in Hereditary haemorrhagic telangiectasia: a cross-sectional study

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F. Pagella - E. Maiorano - S. Ugolini - R. Lizzio - F. Sovardi - R. Mirabella - L. Nanfitò - C. Tinelli - A. De Silvestri - C. Olivieri - G. Spinozzi - E. Matti

Background: Epistaxis is the main complaint in patients with Hereditary haemorrhagic telangiectasia (HHT). Even though the role of epistaxis in affecting the quality of life (QoL) is well-known, little is known about epidemiological and clinical factors contributing to epistaxis severity and QoL.
Methodology: This is a cross-sectional study, including adult patients with HHT with epistaxis. All patients underwent an otolaryngological evaluation with nasal endoscopy. Epistaxis severity was graded using the FID score, and QoL was evaluated with the Short-Form Health Survey (SF-36). Descriptive statistics were produced for demographic characteristics; the Shapiro-Wilk test was used to test the normal distribution of quantitative variables. Correlation between the quantitative variables was evaluated with Pearson’s correlation coefficient. Both univariate and multivariate linear regression models were fitted to find associations between demographic or clinical factors and the FID score or SF-36.
Results: A total of 234 patients with HHT were included in the study. The univariate analysis highlighted the association between high blood pressure, septal perforation, nocturnal epistaxis, surgery, blood transfusion, hormonal therapy and both FID score and QoL. Sex, allergic rhinitis and nasal polyposis were neither related to epistaxis severity nor perceived health.
Conclusions: Epistaxis severity and QoL in patients with HHT are influenced by several clinical factors both dependent and independent from HHT. Some of the results are consistent with those already published, but for the first time, we extended the analysis to different clinical parameters, such as endoscopic findings, never assessed before.

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