Objectives: The aim of this study was to shorten the Health-Related Quality of Life (HRQL) DISABKIDS Chronic Generic Measure (DCGM) for children and adolescents and to test its reliability, construct, and external validity.
Study design: 1153 children and adolescents (8-16 years) with chronic health conditions (asthma, arthritis, epilepsy, cerebral palsy, diabetes, atopic dermatitis, cystic fibrosis) and their family were recruited from different paediatric clinical settings in seven European countries. A two-time assessment comprised reports on sociodemographics, health status and HRQL of children/adolescents.
Results: The 37-item DCGM describes six dimensions (Independence, Physical Limitation, Emotion, Social Inclusion, Social Exclusion and Treatment) confirmed by Confirmatory Factor Analysis, multi-item scaling and item-goodness of fit to Rasch model. Internal consistency (Cronbach's alpha: 0.70-0.87) and test-retest reliability (ICC: 0.71-0.83) were satisfactory. Correlations between DCGM-37 and other HRQL instruments were the highest between dimensions evaluating similar concepts. Regarding discriminant validity of the DCGM-37, girls and older adolescents reported lower emotional we ll-being. Children belonging to families with low level of affluence and those with severe health conditions were found to have worse HRQL in all domains.
Conclusion: Reliability, construct validity as well as convergent and discriminant validity of the DCGM-37 were shown.