Long-term effect of adenotonsillectomy on quality of life in pediatric patients

Laryngoscope. 2003 Oct;113(10):1639-44. doi: 10.1097/00005537-200310000-00003.


Hypothesis: Adenotonsillectomy improves general and disease-specific quality of life for properly selected patients suffering for upper airway obstruction secondary to adenotonsillar hypertrophy (UAO) and obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).

Study design: Prospective, nonrandomized questionnaire.

Specific aims: To evaluate quality of life in patients with UAO and OSA using general quality of life instruments as well as disease-specific instruments. The results will be compared both pre- and postoperatively.

Methods: Fifty-five patients aged 2 to 16 with the clinical diagnosis of UAO or OSA were recruited. The caregivers completed Children's Health Questionnaire Parent Form-28 (CHQPF-28) and OSA-18 quality of life measures both pre- and postoperatively in the long and short term. Statistical analysis was performed using the unpaired Student t test, P value less than.05, and Spearman Rank coefficient.

Results: CHQ-PF28 scores were improved in the Physical Summary parameter in long-term follow-up. Psychosocial scores did not improve significantly. OSA-18 scores showed improvement in both the short-and long-term scores. Physical findings and symptoms did not impact scores in any domain.

Conclusions: Quality of life in children with OSA does improve after adenotonsillectomy. Disease-specific clinometric instruments show improvement in domains affected by the disease process. However, instruments used to assess general quality of life may show physical improvement but not psychosocial.

MeSH terms

  • Adenoidectomy*
  • Adolescent
  • Airway Obstruction / etiology
  • Airway Obstruction / surgery
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Health Status Indicators
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Prospective Studies
  • Quality of Life*
  • Sleep Apnea, Obstructive / complications
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Tonsillectomy*