Yelitza Sánchez, Ruth Ríos, and Mario H. Sánchez. School of Public Health, University of Puerto Rico, Medical Sciences Campus, PO BOX 365067, San Juan, PR 00936, 787-758-2525 EXT.1453, firstname.lastname@example.org
Background: Epilepsy is the most common neurological disorder that affects children in the US. There is a great interest to study the impact of epilepsy on Health Related Quality of Life (HRQOL). In Puerto Rico, the epilepsy prevalence is 2%, and 65 % of these cases are children and adolescents. Objective: The aim of this study was to determine factors that may affect the quality of life of children with epilepsy. Methods: Parental report was obtained in a sample of 91 children with epilepsy receiving treatment in two clinics in the metropolitan area. HRQOL was measured by the Quality of Life in Childhood Epilepsy Questionnaire (Sabaz, 2003). Socio-demographic and epilepsy-treatment-related information was also gathered. The statistical analyses included descriptive and multivariate analysis. Results: The greatest proportion of children from the sample is enrolled in special education (44%) or in combination with regular education (19%). Almost 80% use more than one medicine to control their seizures, and 22% reported a combined type of seizures. The multivariate analysis results indicate that the type of education (p=.004), the type of seizure (p=.062) and the number of medications taken (p=.004) are associated to HRQOL. Conclusion: There are several factors that affect the quality of life of children diagnosed with epilepsy. Among these are some related to the treatment itself and others to the severity and outcomes of the condition. Further studies should explore the agreement between parents' and children's perception, and intervention strategies to improve health-related quality of life of children diagnosed with epilepsy.
Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the session, the participant (learner) in this session will be able to
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
The 134th Annual Meeting & Exposition (November 4-8, 2006) of APHA