About EQ-5D

EQ-5D Products

There are three main EQ-5D instruments:

The EQ-5D-3L classification system consists of five dimensions: mobility, self-care, usual activities, pain/discomfort and anxiety/depression, each with three levels: no problems “1”, moderate problems “2”, and severe problems “3”. Each health state is described as a vector of these five dimensions. With 3 levels for each dimension, the EQ-5D-3L describes 243 distinct health states, with 11111 being the best health state (full health), and 33333 the worst health state.

The EQ-5D-5L classification system consists of five dimensions: mobility, self-care, usual activities, pain/discomfort and anxiety/depression, each with five levels: no problems “1”, slight problems “2”, moderate problems “3”, severe problems “4”, and extreme problems “5”. Each health state is described as a vector of these five dimensions. With 5 levels for each dimension, the EQ-5D-5L describes 3125 distinct health states, with 11111 being the best health state (full health), and 55555 the worst health state.

The EQ-5D-Y classification system consists of five dimensions: mobility, self-care, usual activities, pain/discomfort and anxiety/depression, each with three levels: no problems “1”, moderate problems “2”, and severe problems “3”. Each health state is described as a vector of these five dimensions. With 3 levels for each dimension, the EQ-5D-3L describes 243 distinct health states, with 11111 being the best health state (full health), and 33333 the worst health state. The difference between the youth and 3 level version of the EQ-5D is the use of simpler terms in the former as it is deigned for use in younger populations (12-18 years old).

In addition to the classification system, each of the instruments also includes a visual analogue scale (EQ VAS). The EQ VAS records the respondent’s self-rated health on a visual analogue scale from 0 to 100, whereby 0 indicates ‘the worst health you can imagine’, and 100 ‘the best health you can imagine’. This information can be used as a quantitative measure of health as judged by the individual respondents.

EQ-5D User Guide

The EQ-5D User Guide has been developed in order to give users basic information on how to use the EQ-5D instrument. The EQ-5D User Guide is available for all EQ-5D instruments.

How to use the EQ-5D

The EQ-5D-3L essentially consists of 2 pages – the EQ-5D descriptive system and the EQ visual analogue scale (EQ VAS). The EQ-5D-3L descriptive system comprises the following 5 dimensions: mobility, self-care, usual activities, pain/discomfort and anxiety/depression. Each dimension has 3 levels: no problems, some problems, extreme problems.

Scoring the EQ-5D-3L Descriptive System: The respondent is asked to indicate his/her health state by ticking (or placing a cross) in the box against the most appropriate statement in each of the 5 dimensions.

How to use the EQ-5D (EQ-5D-3L Descriptive system)

 Scoring the EQ VAS: The EQ VAS records the respondent’s self-rated health on a vertical, visual analogue scale where the endpoints are labeled ‘Best imaginable health state’ and ‘Worst imaginable health state’. This information can be used as a quantitative measure of health outcome as judged by the individual respondents.

How to use the EQ-5D (EQ-5D-3L_EQ-VAS)

The EQ-5D-5L still consists of 2 pages – the EQ-5D-5L descriptive system and the EQ visual Analogue scale (EQ VAS). The descriptive system comprises the same 5 dimensions as the EQ-5D-5D-3L (mobility, self care, usual activities, pain/discomfort, anxiety/depression). However, each dimension now has 5 levels: no problems, slight problems, moderate problems, severe problems, and extreme problems.

Scoring the EQ-5D-5L Descriptive System: The respondent is asked to indicate his/her health state by ticking (or placing a cross) in the box against the most appropriate statement in each of the 5 dimensions. This decision results in a 1-digit number expressing the level selected for that dimension. The digits for 5 dimensions can be combined in a 5-digit number describing the respondent’s health state.

How to use the EQ-5D (EQ-5D-5L Descriptive system)

Scoring the EQ VAS: The EQ VAS records the respondent’s self-rated health on a 20 cm vertical, visual analogue scale with endpoints labeled ‘the best health you can imagine’ and ‘the worst health you can imagine’. This information can be used as a quantitative measure of health as judged by the individual respondents.

How to use the EQ-5D (EQ-5D-5L_EQ-VAS)

The EQ-5D-Y use is similar to the EQ-5D-3L.

Please note that without the prior written consent of the EuroQol Office, you are not permitted to i.e. use, reproduce, alter, amend, convert, translate, publish or make available in whatever way (digital, hard-copy etc.) the EQ-5D and related proprietary materials.

The EuroQol Research Foundation stresses that any and all copyrights in the EQ-5D, its (digital) representations, and its translations exclusively vest in the EuroQol Research Foundation. EQ-5D™ is a trademark of the EuroQol Research Foundation.