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J Felius, A Berezovsky, SL Fawcett, AR O'Connor, SR Salomão, EE Birch; Children’s Visual Function Questionnaires for Younger and Older Age Groups: Results from Pediatric Patients with Mild to Severe Vision Loss . Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2002;43(13):3819.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
Purpose: Previous results from a children’s visual function questionnaire indicated potential use as a vision-associated quality-of-life (QOL) instrument in clinical research, but also raised the need for specific versions of the instrument for younger and older children, and the need to validate the instrument in patients with a wider range of visual impairment [Felius et al., ARVO 2001]. Here we present results from two age-specific questionnaires in patients with mild to severe vision loss, and we explore subscales related to the child’s competence, personality and social behavior, family concerns, and treatment concerns, in addition to general health and vision. Methods: Questionnaires for younger (age < 3 years; 50 items) and older children (age ≥ 3 years; 55 items) were constructed from the earlier instrument. Parents of 105 patients (age 0.2 - 3 years, median 1.1) completed the «younger» version, and parents of 154 patients (age 3 - 18 years, median 5.0) completed the «older» version. All patients had mild (35%), moderate (34%), or severe (31%) vision loss in at least one eye (based on visual acuity) resulting from a variety of conditions (e.g., cataract, retinal disease, cortical visual impairment). Questionnaire data were explored using factor analysis. Internal consistency of subscales was determined using Cronbach’s α coefficient. Results: In addition to general health and vision (3 items), the data from the older children’s version of the questionnaire revealed subscales associated with «competence’ (10 items; α = 0.87), «personality’ (7 items; α = 0.79), «family concerns’ (6 items; α = 0.75), and «treatment’ (5 items; α = 0.84). Although the analysis yielded 3 factors with α ≥ 0.7 in the younger patients, the items loading on each factor did not relate to a common underlying dimension. Conclusion: For children age ≥ 3 years, five QOL subscales were defined for use in clinical research. For younger patients it seems more difficult to distinguish between meaningful underlying dimensions of the instrument, and a single-value total score might therefore be more appropriate to assess their vision-associated QOL.
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