Aim: To evaluate health-related quality-of-life (HR-QoL) and the asthma control test (ACT) in children with problematic severe asthma and those with controlled asthma and to identify whether clinical characteristics show correlations with these measurements.
Methods: This multicentre cross-sectional study included 93 children in total, 54 with problematic severe asthma and 39 age-matched with controlled asthma. Subjects completed the Paediatric Asthma Quality-of-Life Questionnaire as well as a standardized health questionnaire and the ACT. Objective measurements of exhaled nitric oxide, specific sensitization, pulmonary function and bronchial hyper-responsiveness to methacholine were also taken.
Results: HR-QoL was reduced in children with problematic severe asthma (5.4 vs. 6.7, p < 0.001), particularly for girls (5.1 vs. 5.6 for boys, p = 0.02), and their ACT scores were also lower (17 vs. 23, p < 0.001) compared with those of subjects with controlled asthma. A HR-QoL score <6.2 discriminated problematic severe asthma from controlled asthma with 85% sensitivity and 97% specificity, as did the ACT score <20 (79% sensitivity and 94% specificity). Objective measures and other clinical characteristics were weakly associated with HR-QoL or ACT score.
Conclusion: Subjective measurements of HR-QoL and asthma control are both equally useful in differentiating children with problematic severe asthma from those with controlled asthma.
© 2011 The Author(s)/Acta Paediatrica © 2011 Foundation Acta Paediatrica.