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Pediatr Blood Cancer. 2012 May;58(5):766-74. doi: 10.1002/pbc.23158. Epub 2011 May 16.

Reporting health-related quality of life scores to physicians during routine follow-up visits of pediatric oncology patients: is it effective?

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Psychosocial Department, Academic Medical Centre/Emma Children's Hospital, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.



The aim of the current study is to investigate the effectiveness of an intervention that provides health-related quality of life (HRQOL) scores of the patient (the QLIC-ON PROfile) to the pediatric oncologist.


Children with cancer participated in a sequential cohort intervention study: intervention N = 94, control N = 99. Primary outcomes of effectiveness were communication about HRQOL domains (t-test, Mann-Whitney U-test) and identification of HRQOL problems (chi-squared test). Secondary outcomes were satisfaction (multilevel analysis), referrals (chi-squared test), and HRQOL (multilevel analysis).


The QLIC-ON PROfile increased discussion of emotional functioning (control M = 32.9 vs. intervention M = 47.4, P < 0.05) and psychosocial functioning (M = 56.9 vs. M = 63.8, P < 0.05). Additionally more emotional problems remained unidentified in the control compared to the intervention group, for example, anger (control 26% vs. intervention 3%, P < 0.01), fear (14% vs. 0%, P < 0.01), and sadness (26% vs. 0%, P < 0.001). The intervention had no effect on satisfaction and referrals, but did improve HRQOL of patients 5-7 years of age with respect to self-esteem (P < 0.05), family activities (P < 0.05), and psychosocial functioning (P < 0.01).


We conclude that a PRO is a helpful tool for systematic monitoring HRQOL of children with cancer, without lengthening the duration of the consultation. It is recommended to be implemented in clinical practice.

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