Abstract : Introduction : Aim of this 6-month follow-up study was to find the difference between the Quality of Life
(QOL) and depressive symptoms of patients with Lumbar Disc Herniation undergoing open discectomy
attending a tertiary care hospital in Eastern India
Materials and Methods: Hundred patients fulfilling inclusion and exclusion criteria were included in the
study. Twenty patients either dropped out of follow-up or were not able to complete the investigations.
Eighty patients was the final patient population. Socio-demographic profile sheet, Clinical profile sheet,
GHQ 12, SF-36 for Quality of Life and Montgomery Asberg Depression Rating Scale were used at Presurgery
i.e. at baseline (S0), at 1 months (S1), at 3 months (S2), and at 6 months (S3) post-discectomy.
Results: Sixty-three percent of patients were male and majority (75%) was from rural background. The
most common site of disc herniation was at L4-L5 followed by L5-S1.Various subscales of SF-36 showed
significant improvement at 3 months and 6-months post operation. GHQ-12 scores were significantly lower
at the end of 6 months indicating an improvement in general physical and mental health. Depressive
symptoms on MADRS showed that at the end of 6 months the scores were significantly lower compared to
pre-surgery scores and at 6 months they could be categorized in the euthymic range.
Conclusion: The discectomy procedure not only relieves the pain symptom but also improves depression
resulting from pain symptoms, functionality, general health and overall quality of life of patients suffering
from herniated lumbar disc. Initial lack of improvement in pain symptoms and functionality post surgery
could be due to Depressive symptoms. Assessment of depressive symptoms and its treatment could improve
both functionality as well as perceived pain.
Keywords: Herniated disc, Low back pain, Quality of Life, Depressive Symptoms.