Child behaviour after anaesthesia: association of socioeconomic factors and child behaviour checklist to the post-hospital behaviour questionnaire

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In the process of validation of the Swedish translation of the Post-Hospital Behaviour Questionnaire (PHBQ) to assess its relation to the Child Behaviour Checklist (CBCL) and to describe its relation to sociodemographic factors.


Method: Three hundred and forty children 2–13 years studied in connection with elective procedures which included anaesthesia. Parents completed the CBCL forms before and after hospitalization as well as the PHBQ 2 weeks after hospitalization.


In multivariate analysis of PHBQ total score independent risk factors were: age <5 (OR 2.4; CI 1.4–4.0), living in a one parent family (OR 4.4; CI: 1.6–12.6) and not living in a rural area (OR 1.6; CI: 1.0–2.6). The correlation between the total scores for PHBQ and CBCL for children aged 2–4 was moderate: (r = 0.38; p < 0.005). For children aged 4–7 there were significant correlations between PHBQ sleep anxiety and CBCL Other problems (r = 0.4; p < 0.01), PHBQ eating disturbances and CBCL total score (r = 0.3; p < 0.01), though none of these significant correlations were observed for children above 7 years of age.


There is an association between PHBQ and CBCL which is weaker for older children. The reason for this might be that PHBQ is more sensitive in the younger age group and to minor changes in behaviour. Children younger than 5 years of age or living in a one parent family or not living in rural areas appear to have higher incidence of problematic behaviour in a 2 week follow up after anaesthesia.

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