Quality of life of adolescents with cerebral palsy: Perspectives of adolescents and parents
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Quality of life (QOL) has emerged over the past 20 years as an outcome for measuring the effectiveness of health-improvement interventions. The Cerebral Palsy Quality of Life Questionnaire for Children (CPQOL-Child) is well regarded and now integrated into research internationally.We describe the results of qualitative research, using grounded research in which we aimed to identify domains of QOL for adolescents with cerebral palsy (CP) from adolescent and parent perspectives to guide the development of an adolescent version. Seventeen adolescents (ninemales, eight females) aged 13 to 18 years (mean=15.53 SD=1.74), with varying levels of impairment (Gross Motor Function Classification System levels I n=5, II n=2, III n=6, IV n=4, and V n=6) and their parents (n=23) participated in semi-structured interviews. Questions included: 'What do you think is important to your (child's) QOL?' and 'How does CP impact on your (child's) life?' Fifteen themes were identified, including domains related to health issues in adolescence, participation, education, specific CP-related issues (pain and discomfort, communication), family issues, practical issues (financial resources), and changes associated with adolescence (sexuality, independence). The composition of these QOL domains reflects the developmental concerns of adolescents with CP, adding to the views of children, and strongly supports adolescent participation in the development of self-reported well-being and QOLmeasures. Many of the domains are consistent with child reports of QOL and thus it appears feasible and valid to develop a measure that will be transferable across childhood and adolescence. © 2008 The Author Journal compilation © 2008 Institute of Australian Geographers.
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