gms | German Medical Science

27th German Cancer Congress Berlin 2006

German Cancer Society (Frankfurt/M.)

22. - 26.03.2006, Berlin

Development of a PC-software “Computer based Health Evaluation System” (CHES) for the computerized assessment of quality of life in oncology

Meeting Abstract

  • corresponding author presenting/speaker Bernhard Holzner - Medizinische Universität Innsbruck, Universitätsklinik für Psychiatrie, Österreich
  • Gerhard Rumpold - Medizinische Universität Innsbruck, Universitätsklinik für Medizinische Psychologie und Psychotherapie
  • Georg Kemmler - Medizinische Universität Innsbruck, Universitätsklinik für Psychiatrie
  • August Zabernigg - Bezirkskrankenhaus Kufstein
  • Barbara Sperner-Unterweger - Medizinische Universität Innsbruck, Universitätsklinik für Psychiatrie

27. Deutscher Krebskongress. Berlin, 22.-26.03.2006. Düsseldorf, Köln: German Medical Science; 2006. DocIS052

The electronic version of this article is the complete one and can be found online at:

Published: March 20, 2006

© 2006 Holzner et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.



Aims: Studies in which computer-aided routinely assessment of quality of life (QoL) in the clinical oncological practice was evaluated suggest some important benefits for the physicians, the patients and their treatment.

Aim of this project was the development of a tool for the computerized collection, processing and presentation of longitudinal QoL data.

Methods: The software developed is called “Computer based Health Evaluation System (CHES)”. With the help of CHES, questionnaire subscales of various QoL instruments such as the EORTC QLQ-C30 or FACIT can be automatically calculated and presented as a graphical bar chart. Reference values (e.g. mean, 25th and 75th percentile) are incorporated in the graphical format for enhancing the significance of the QoL data.

The longitudinal graphical presentation enables the physicians to detect QoL deficits (e.g. emotional problems) and problems in domains such as fatigue and pain at one single glance. Furthermore it is possible to identify the impact of initiated medical interventions on certain QoL domains as well as on the course of symptoms.

Results: The software was successfully tested in a longitudinal study investigating the impact of computerized EORTC QLQ-C30 assessment in the daily clinical routine of an oncological outpatient unit for the treatment of chemotherapy patients (n=128).

Patients’ satisfaction with care and QoL (emotional, social domain and overall health) improved in the group using CHES (for real-time QoL feedback) in the course of CT-treatment. This was especially true for the subgroup of CT non-responders. In one sixth of the patient visits medical interventions were initiated as a consequence of the interpretation and discussion of the QoL profile.

Conclusion: Based on the promising results CHES has been developed further and is now used in 3 other clinical oncological settings: geriatric cancer, brain tumor and oncological patients in the after care.