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Qual Life Res. 2005 Mar;14(2):415-23.

Self-perceived quality of life of children and adolescents with physical disabilities in Hong Kong.

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Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong, China.


Although illnesses and diseases are thought to adversely affect quality of life (QoL), whether children who have physical disabilities (PD) from a young age adapt to the effect of developmental disabilities has rarely been investigated. This study attempted to assess the subjective wellbeing, and examine the correlation between objective and subjective QoL, of children with PD. Using a self-reported non-disease-specific questionnaire, the QoL of 72 young persons (13.5+/-2.0 years) with PD was contrasted with those who do not have disabilities (n = 510; age-matched). MANOVA analyses revealed that the PD group had lower objective QoL score (63.0+/-7.4 vs. 66.8+/-5.7, p < 0.001) but the two groups were not significantly different in subjective QoL score (70.9+/-11.4 vs. 69.6+/-13.6, p = 0.466). No correlation was found between objective and subjective QoL in the PD group (r ranged from 0.06 to 0.19), while weak to medium correlations (r ranged from 0.03 to 0.41) were observed for the controls. The apparent detachment of subjective feeling and objective circumstances in the PD group may reflect adjustment to developmental disabilities.

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