Objective: Health-related quality of life (HRQL) is compromised in children with epilepsy. The current study aimed to identify correlates of HRQL in children with drug resistant epilepsy.
Methods: Data came from 115 children enrolled in the Impact of Pediatric Epilepsy Surgery on Health-Related Quality of Life Study (PEPSQOL), a multicenter prospective cohort study. Individual, clinical, and family factors were evaluated. HRQL was measured using the Quality of Life in Childhood Epilepsy Questionnaire (QOLCE), a parent-rated epilepsy-specific instrument, with composite scores ranging from 0 to 100. A series of univariable linear regression analyses were conducted to identify significant associations with HRQL, followed by a multivariable regression analysis.
Results: Children had a mean age of 11.85 ± 3.81 years and 65 (56.5%) were male. The mean composite QOLCE score was 60.18 ± 16.69. Child age, sex, age at seizure onset, duration of epilepsy, caregiver age, caregiver education, and income were not significantly associated with HRQL. Univariable regression analyses revealed that a higher number of anti-seizure medications (p = 0.020), lower IQ (p = 0.002), greater seizure frequency (p = 0.048), caregiver unemployment (p = 0.010), higher caregiver depressive and anxiety symptoms (p < 0.001 for both), poorer family adaptation, fewer family resources, and a greater number of family demands (p < 0.001 for all) were associated with lower HRQL. Multivariable regression analysis showed that lower child IQ (β = 0.20, p = 0.004), fewer family resources (β = 0.43, p = 0.012), and caregiver unemployment (β = 6.53, p = 0.018) were associated with diminished HRQL in children.
Significance: The results emphasize the importance of child cognition and family variables in the HRQL of children with drug-resistant epilepsy. The findings speak to the importance of offering comprehensive care to children and their families to address the nonmedical features that impact on HRQL.
Keywords: Family; Health-related quality of life; Pediatric epilepsy.
Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 International League Against Epilepsy.