The Pediatric Cancer Quality of Life Inventory (PCQL). I. Instrument Development, Descriptive Statistics, and Cross-Informant Variance

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Abstract

Intensive antineoplastic treatment protocols have been developed and implemented in controlled clinical trials with the goal of improving the survival of pediatric cancer patients. Multidimensional health outcome evaluation of this cohort of pediatric cancer patients being treated with these modern regimens is essential in order to enhance health-related quality of life. The Pediatric Cancer Quality of Life Inventory (PCQL) was developed to be a standardized assessment instrument to assess systematically pediatric cancer patient's health-related quality of life outcomes. The PCQL was administered to 291 pediatric cancer patients and their parents at various stages of treatment. The aim of the present study was to present the development, descriptive statistics, and cross-informant variance for the PCQL items. Large variability in symptoms and health-related problems were found as expected given the wide heterogeneity in the patient population sampled. Patient/parent concordance on individual items averaged in the medium effect size range. The findings underscore the importance of measuring both patient report and parent report of patient symptoms and problems in pediatric cancer health-related quality of life assessment.

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