Background: Asthma is the most common chronic childhood disease. Childhood asthma contributes significantly to morbidity among children and has a significant impact on the quality of life (QoL) and daily routines of both the children and their parents.
Aim and objective: The purpose of this study was to investigate how Swedish parents of children with asthma experience their QoL, and to investigate whether there were differences concerning QoL between parents within the same family. The purpose was also to investigate possible connections between their QoL and background variables.
Method: A total of 371 parents of children with asthma (57% mothers and 43% fathers) participated in the study. The Paediatric Asthma Caregiver's Quality Of Life Questionnaire (PACQLQ) was used to measure the parents' QoL, i.e. how the child's asthma interferes with the parents' normal activities and how it has made them feel.
Results: The findings show that most parents of children with asthma evaluated their QoL as close to the positive end of the scale, and there was close agreement in the scoring between parents within the same family. Significant associations were found between parents' lower QoL outcome and living in the North of Sweden. There were also significant associations between fathers' lower QoL outcome and having a child younger than 13 years of age and mothers' lower QoL outcome and having a child with severe asthma. Although the result shows that a child's asthma did not influence the parents' QoL to a greater degree, it is still important for healthcare workers to help these parents to sustain and improve their well-being.
Conclusions: The fact that they just evaluated their QoL during the preceding week only, and did so at the time when their children were being treated with asthma medication, might have influenced the results in a positive direction.