Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Phillip J. Brantley


The goal of the current study was to gain knowledge of the impact that dietary compliance has on quality of life for end-stage renal disease patients receiving chronic in-center hemodialysis. As a result of this type of research, health care professionals may better understand the individual and collective influence that various aspects of dietary compliance have on quality of life. This knowledge may be helpful in making future recommendations about the necessity of the dietary regimen. This study investigated the relation between three commonly employed physiological parameters of dietary compliance (blood urea nitrogen, potassium, and intersession weight gain) and four measures of quality of life (Quality of Life Index, Personal Resource Questionnaire, Karnofsky Activity Scale, and Psychological General Well-Being Schedule). Also, the influence of relevant medical/demographic characteristics (age, age beginning dialysis, years on dialysis, and number of diagnoses) was examined. Subjects in the study included 67 hemodialysis patients from a university hospital dialysis center in a large southern city. Correlational procedures, multiple regression analyses, and a canonical correlation were employed to investigate the association between dietary compliance, medical/demographic variables and quality of life. In general, the results suggested that the dietary compliance variables have little impact on quality of life. This finding provided further support for the loosening of dietary restrictions. Medical/demographic variables, however, were modestly correlated with one quality of life variable, activity. Knowledge about relevant medical demographic characteristics suggest that high risk patient profiles may be developed for early identification of patients who may benefit from rehabilitation. One problem noted in this study is the difficulty in defining and measuring the construct of quality of life.