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Keywords:

  • osteosarcoma;
  • outcome research;
  • quality of life

Abstract

Purpose

This study was designed to evaluate the development of health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and coping strategies of children and young adults, who have undergone surgery for a malignant bone tumor in childhood.

Patients and Instruments

In this single center follow-up study 20 patients were included. The patients were tested 3 and 8 years after treatment. At the 3-year mark the parents participated as well. To measure the HRQoL and coping strategies the TACQOL and the TAAQOL questionnaires and the Utrecht Coping List for Adolescents (UCLA) were used. All measurements were compared to a control group of healthy peers (n = 1,122 and n = 272, respectively).

Results

At the first measurement (3 years after treatment) both the study patients and their parents reported significantly lower HRQoL scores on two domains: motor functioning and autonomy (P < 0.05). In addition parents reported their children to have significantly lower HRQoL scores on cognitive functioning and experiencing positive emotions. Five years later (8 years after treatment) the young adults reported comparable HRQoL on motor functioning and autonomy, and significantly higher HRQoL scores on cognitive functioning, social contacts and negative emotions (less depressive moods). With regard to coping strategies no significant differences between the two measurements in the study population and the reference group were found.

Conclusions

Three years after surgery for a malignant bone tumor, patients and their parents reported lower HRQoL scores on different domains compared with a reference group. Eight years after surgery the young adults surprisingly reported comparable or higher HRQoL scores. These patients treated for bone cancer were able to adapt well after treatment and showed no long-term emotional or social problems. Pediatr Blood Cancer © 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.