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Rheumatology (Oxford). 2004 Mar;43(3):325-30. Epub 2003 Oct 17.

The relationship between health-related quality of life, pain and coping strategies in juvenile idiopathic arthritis.

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  • 1Research and Evaluation Unit, Women's and Children's Hospital, 72 King William Road, North Adelaide, South Australia 5006, Australia.



To investigate the relationship between health-related quality of life (HRQL), experience of pain and pain coping strategies in children with juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). To compare reports describing these variables obtained from children and their parents.


Participants were 59 children aged 8 to 18 yr with JIA and their parents. Parents and children completed the PedsQL generic core scales and arthritis module, the visual analogue scale of the Varni-Thompson Pediatric Pain Questionnaire, and the Waldron/Varni Pediatric Pain Coping Inventory. Parents rated children's functional disability using the Childhood Health Assessment Questionnaire.


Parents reported significantly lower scores (indicating worse HRQL) than children on five of the eight PedsQL scales rating children's HRQL. Parents and children reported a significant negative relationship between pain levels and the PedsQL scores assessing children's physical, emotional and social functioning. They also reported a significant negative relationship between scores on several pain coping scales and scores on the PedsQL scales. However, the pattern of these relationships varied for reports from parents and children.


Pain intensity and pain coping strategies have a significant and independent relationship with several domains that comprise the HRQL of children with JIA. However, parents and children have differing perceptions of the nature of these relationships. The differences emphasize the importance of clinicians obtaining information about children's HRQL, pain levels and pain coping strategies from both parents and children.

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