Coping with a chronic pediatric health condition and health-related quality of life

Corinna Petersen*, Silke Schmidt, Monika Bullinger, Michael Quittan, Othmar Schuhfried, Rima Nourafza, Marie Claude Simeoni, Delphine Orbicini, David Debensason, Ute Thyen, Estner Müller-Godeffroy, Atnanasios Vidalis, John Tsanakas, Elpis Hatziagorou, Paraskevi Karagianni, Hendrik Koopman, Rolanda Baars, John Eric Chaplin, Mick Power, Clare AthertonPeter Hoare

*Corresponding author for this work
27 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Health-related quality of life (HRQOL) is increasingly considered an important outcome variable in pediatric research. Despite the growing interest little is known about the relationship between HRQOL and other significant constructs such as coping with a chronic health condition. Objective: The current paper examined age, gender, and health condition effects on coping and HRQOL scales and explored the relationship between both constructs. Methods: A study with 295 children and adolescents (8-16 years) with three different chronic health conditions (asthma, diabetes mellitus, and arthritis) was conducted in five European countries. Coping was assessed with the CODI questionnaire and HRQOL with the chronic generic module of the DISABKIDS instrument set, which was developed within the European DISABKIDS study. Results: Significant gender differences were found for the Emotional Reaction and Acceptance scale of the CODI and the Physical and Emotion domain of HRQOL. Age differences were noted for the Wishful Thinking and Avoidance scale as well as the Emotion domain of HRQOL. Interaction effects between age and gender were not detected. Significant differences were also found regarding the type of chronic health condition and the coping scales Wishful Thinking and Distance, as well as Avoidance. Moderate significant correlations were found between the coping scales Emotional Reaction and Acceptance and the HRQOL scales. Conclusion: Gender, age, and health condition differences with regard to the use of different coping strategies need to be taken into consideration. Coping and HRQOL are closely related, especially regarding the Emotional domain where a potential overlap was noted. Here, a more precise separation of constructs is needed.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Psychologist
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)50-56
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 2006

Research Areas and Centers

  • Academic Focus: Center for Brain, Behavior and Metabolism (CBBM)


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