Assessment of health status in children with spina bifida

C. Rendeli, E. Ausili, F. Tabacco, P. Caliandro, I. Aprile, P. Tonali, E. Salvaggio, L. Padua

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Study design: Prospective multidimensional study by means of: (1) clinical assessment, (2) parental-administered questionnaire for general health (CHQ-PF50), and (3) standardised disability measurements. Objectives: To assess the health-related quality of life (QoL) and disability in children with spina bifida (SB) and to correlate them with the clinical picture and our previous study on adolescents with SB. Setting: SB Centre at a University Hospital in Italy. Methods: A total of 29 consecutive children with SB (mean age 11.4, range 4-14 years) were evaluated through Child Health Questionnaire Parental Form (CHQ-PF50), the FIM instrument, and the Barthel index. Results: Disability was inversely related only (r = 0.49; P = 0.007) to the physical aspect of the QoL of children. Similarly, the disability was inversely related (r = 0.37; P = 0.005) to the emotional aspect of QoL of patient's parents. Unexpectedly, for the mental aspects of QoL of patients, major disability was not associated with higher psychological distress and severe role disability due to emotional problems. At clinical examination, findings especially for continence and number of catheterisations were usually related to deterioration of physical aspects of QoL (r = -2.28; P = 0.02) in children. Conclusion: The multiperspective assessment showed that there is a linear inverse correlation between disability and QoL in children with SB only for physical aspects. Conversely, there is linear inverse correlation between disability and QoL in patient's parents regarding only emotional aspects. Moreover, this study provided useful information for clinical practice underlining that continence problems are those that most affect QoL in children with SB and their parents.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)230-235
Number of pages6
JournalSpinal Cord
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2005


  • CHQ-PF50
  • Disability
  • Outcome research
  • Quality of life
  • Spinal dysraphism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


Dive into the research topics of 'Assessment of health status in children with spina bifida'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this