Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Child Care Health Dev. 2008 Jul;34(4):418-29. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2214.2008.00825.x.

The impact of childhood conditions and concurrent morbidities on child health and well-being.

Author information

1
The McCaughey Centre, School of Population Health, The University of Melbourne, Burwood, Melbourne, Vic, Australia. ewaters@unimelb.edu.au

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Understanding the impact of illnesses and morbidities experienced by children and adolescents is essential to clinical and population health programme decision making and intervention research. This study sought to: (1) examine the population prevalence of physical and mental health conditions for children and quantify their impact on multiple dimensions of children's health and well-being; and (2) examine the cumulative effect of concurrent conditions.

METHODS:

We conducted a cross-sectional school-based epidemiological study of 5414 children and adolescents aged 5-18 years, and examined parental reports of child health and well-being using the parent-report Child Health Questionnaire (CHQ) PF50 13 scales are scored on a 0-100 pt scale with clinically meaningful differences of five points and the presence of childhood conditions (illnesses and health problems).

RESULTS:

Asthma, dental, vision and allergies are the most commonly identified health problems for children and adolescents, followed by attention- and behaviour-related problems (asthma 17.9-23.2%, dental 11.9-22.7%, vision 7.2-14.7%, chronic allergies 8.8-13.9%, attention problems 5.1-13.8% and behaviour problems 5.7-12.0%). As the number of concurrent health problems increase, overall health and well-being decreases substantively with mean differences in CHQ scale scores of 14 points (-7.69 to -21.51) for physical health conditions, and 28 points (-5.15 to -33.81) for mental health conditions.

CONCLUSIONS:

Children's health and well-being decreases linearly with increasing presence and frequency of health problems. Having three or more conditions concurrently significantly burdens children's health and well-being, particularly for family-related CHQ domains, with a greater burden experienced for mental health conditions than physical health conditions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center