Comparison between children with juvenile idiopathic arthritis and their parents concerning perceived treatment adherence

Arthritis Rheum. 2006 Aug 15;55(4):558-63. doi: 10.1002/art.22104.


Objective: Adherence to treatment in juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) may be associated with better outcomes. Clinicians must be aware of possible divergence between parents and children regarding adherence, in order to gain a better understanding of adherence and factors associated with it. The objective was to determine the level of agreement between children with JIA and their parents concerning perception of the child's adherence to the treatment regimen (for both medications and exercises).

Methods: Fifty patients and their parents, who attended the JIA clinic at the Montreal Children's Hospital, completed the Child Adherence Report Questionnaire and the Parent Adherence Report Questionnaire. Paired t-tests were used to compare parents' and children's scores for adherence questions and agreements were analyzed by intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs).

Results: Parents reported that their children showed more negative reactions to taking medication and doing exercises, more helpfulness from the medication, and more difficulty to carry out the exercise program than their children reported. ICCs (95% confidence interval) for medications and exercises were, respectively, 0.32 (0.04, 0.56) and 0.77 (0.61, 0.87) for overall adherence, 0.33 (0.05, 0.57) and 0.39 (0.09, 0.62) for perceived difficulty to following treatment, and 0.37 (0.09, 0.60) and 0.45 (0.17, 0.67) for how often children had negative reactions following treatment. Levels of agreement for perceived helpfulness of treatments were quite low.

Conclusion: Agreement between parents and children concerning adherence was at best moderate, and generally better for the exercise program than for prescribed medications.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Arthritis, Juvenile / psychology*
  • Arthritis, Juvenile / therapy
  • Attitude to Health
  • Child
  • Exercise
  • Humans
  • Parents / psychology*
  • Patient Compliance*
  • Perception
  • Surveys and Questionnaires