Objective: To define predictors of disease-specific quality of life (QOL) and the relationship between asthma symptoms and disease-specific QOL.
Study design: Three hundred thirty-nine children participated at 4 of 8 Childhood Asthma Management Program clinical centers. Included in the analyses were 2 weeks of asthma symptom data, child-reported health status, and QOL scores from the Pediatric Asthma Quality of Life Questionnaire. Data were obtained 12 months after randomization into the Childhood Asthma Management Program.
Results: Children were rated at baseline as having "moderate" asthma (63%) and "mild" asthma (37%). QOL scores were correlated with the child-reported anxiety measures. Factor analysis of the QOL measure resulted in 2 factors. Stepwise multiple regression indicated that the strongest independent predictors of QOL were the child's anxiety level, age, sex, and a measure of the child's tendency to minimize or exaggerate symptoms.
Conclusions: Children had few asthma symptoms in the 2 weeks before their 12-month follow-up clinic visit and a generally positive QOL, suggesting that mild-to-moderate asthma does not significantly impair QOL. A child's QOL was predicted primarily by their level of anxiety.