BACKGROUND: The majority of infants born before the last trimester now grow up. However, knowledge on subsequent health related quality of life (HRQoL) is scarce. We therefore aimed to compare HRQoL in children born extremely preterm with control children born at term. Furthermore, we assessed HRQoL in relation to perinatal and neonatal morbidity and to current clinical and sociodemographic characteristics. METHOD: The Child Health Questionnaire (CHQ-PF50) and a general questionnaire were applied in a population based cohort of 10 year old children born at gestational age
This study examined the development of health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and health from adolescence to adulthood after extremely preterm birth.
We assessed a population-based cohort of extremely preterm-born (EPB) infants (gestational age of =28 weeks or birthweight of =1000 grams) and term-born (TB) controls at 17 and 24 years of age. They completed the Child Health Questionnaire-Child Form 87 at 17 years of age, the Short Form Health Survey-36 (SF-36) at 24 years of age and the Health Behaviour in School-aged Children-Symptom Checklist at both ages.
Of the 51 eligible EPB subjects, 46 (90%) were included and nine had severe neurosensory disabilities. On the whole, EPB and TB subjects gave their HRQoL and health similar ratings, but EPB subjects with disabilities reported poorer physical functioning at 17 and EPB subjects without disabilities reported lower scores on three of the eight SF-36 scales for social functioning and mental health and reported more psychological health complaints at 24. Differences remained in adjusted analyses. Changes from 17 to 24 years of age were minor in EPB subjects with disabilities.
Our comparison of EPB and TB subjects at the ages of 17 and 24 indicated that psychosocial HRQoL may deteriorate for EPB subjects when they enter adulthood.