When discussing treatment options for patients with acute leukemia, it is important to acknowledge the impact of allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (allo-HCT) or chemotherapy on quality of life (QOL). We performed a cross-sectional questionnaire study that administered SF-36, FACT-Leukemia and EuroQOL5D to 524 acute leukemia survivors, to compare patient-reported QOL between chemotherapy and allo-HCT, and to elucidate predictors of QOL. Patients who received chemotherapy alone had a better physical QOL than those who received allo-HCT. On the other hand, the allo-HCT group reported a better mental QOL. In the comparison of QOL in the allo-HCT patients according to the presence of GVHD at survey, patients who had GVHD symptoms experienced statistically and clinically significantly worse QOL than those who did not. In the allo-HCT patients without GVHD, the physical QOL was comparable to that in the chemotherapy patients, and they experienced significantly better mental and general QOL than the chemotherapy patients. GVHD and immunosuppressive drugs at survey were strongly associated with worse QOL after allo-HCT. In the chemotherapy group, a shorter time between treatment completion and survey was significantly associated with worse QOL. Further evaluation of QOL by a longitudinal assessment with quantitative and qualitative analyses are warranted.
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