Factors that Predict Overall Health and Quality of Life in Non-Ambulatory Individuals with Cerebral Palsy.
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<p><strong>Background: </strong>It is unknown what role specific tasks associated with personal care, positioning, communication and social interaction, and comfort and emotions play in predicting the overall health and quality of life of individuals with non-ambulatory cerebral palsy (CP). In this study, we prospectively evaluated which of these factors were significant predictors of overall health and quality of life.</p>
<p><strong>Methods: </strong>Parents and guardians of non-ambulatory children, adolescents and young adults with CP were prospectively recruited from the Cerebral Palsy Clinic of a large pediatric academic hospital. Caregivers completed the CP Child Questionnaire®. Univariate analyses were used to identify relationships between overall health, overall quality of life (QOL), and responses in the following categories: personal care and activities of daily living, positioning and transfer mobility, comfort and emotions, and communication and social interaction. Significant predictors of overall health and QOL were then determined via logistic regression.</p>
<p><strong>Results: </strong>64 patients ages 0-20 years and Gross Motor Function Classification System levels IV and V were included in our study (mean age 9.16 ±4.96 years). Overall QOL (OR 194.2, 95% CI, 9.5-3964.9) and comfort while sitting (OR 15.9, 95% CI, 1.2-205.3) were significant predictors of overall health. Feelings of unhappiness or sadness (OR 59.9, 95% CI, 1.6-2209.8), difficulty understanding the parent or guardian (OR 29.8, 95% CI, 1.6-543.7), and not attending school (OR 57.2, 95% CI, 2.6-1274.4) were significant predictors of lower overall quality of life.</p>
<p><strong>Conclusions: </strong>Overall QOL appears to predict overall health. Factors associated with comfort and emotions and communication and social interaction appear to predict overall QOL to a greater extent than personal care and transfer mobility. Level of Evidence: Prognostic II.</p>
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