Self‐reported quality of life and degree of youth‐parent agreement: A long‐term follow‐up of childhood‐onset epilepsy
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OBJECTIVE: To prospectively delineate self-reported health-related quality of life (HRQOL) of adolescents and young adults (AYAs) 8 and 10 years after an epilepsy diagnosis and evaluate the degree of AYA-parent agreement in ratings of AYA's HRQOL. METHODS: Data came from the Health-Related Quality of Life in Children with Epilepsy Study (HERQULES), a 10-year longitudinal study of children, aged 4-12 years, with newly diagnosed epilepsy. Epilepsy-specific HRQOL was self-reported by AYA 8 and 10 years after diagnosis and by parents at multiple time points throughout the 10-year follow-up. Measurers of HRQOL over time were analyzed using a linear mixed-effect model approach. AYA-parent agreement was evaluated using intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) and Bland-Altman plots. RESULTS: A total of 165 AYAs participated at long-term follow-up. There was considerable heterogeneity among AYA's HRQOL, and as a group, there was no significant change in HRQOL from the 8- to 10-year follow-up. Household income at the time of diagnosis, seizure control at follow-up, and a history of emotional problems (anxiety/depression) were independent predictors of HRQOL at follow-up. AYA-parent agreement on AYA's HRQOL was moderate (ICC 0.62, 95% CI 0.51-0.71), although considerable differences were observed at the individual level. AYA-parent agreement varied with AYA's and parent's age, seizure control, and family environment. SIGNIFICANCE: In the long-term after a diagnosis of epilepsy, AYAs report stable HRQOL over time at the group level, although notable individual differences exist. Seizure control, anxiety/depression, and family environment meaningfully impact AYA's long-term HRQOL. AYA and parent reports on HRQOL are similar at the group level, although they cannot be used interchangeably, given the large individual differences observed.