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Keywords:

  • children;
  • developmental delay;
  • family impact;
  • health;
  • quality of life

Aims

The study aims to evaluate the quality of life (QOL) and health of children with unclassified developmental delays and the impacts this had on the family.

Methods

In total, 60 parents of pre-school children with unclassified developmental delays and 56 parents of age and gender-matched children with typical development were recruited. We administered the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory (PedsQL)-Generic Core Scale and Pediatric Outcomes Data Collection Instrument to parents to evaluate the QOL and health status of their children. Parents were evaluated by World Health Organization-Quality of Life-Brief Version, PedsQL-Family Impact Module, Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, and PedsQL-Health satisfaction to assess the impacts of this situation on the family. Variables related to QOL and functions of children with unclassified developmental delays were analysed by stepwise regression analysis.

Results

Comparing children with typical development, children with unclassified developmental delays had a significantly lower QOL (including both psychosocial and physical components) and health status. Their parents had a significantly lower QOL, family function and health satisfaction, and higher psychological distress than parents of children with typical development. Gross-motor delay impacts on QOL of these children (regression coefficient: −9.59, P < 0.05), global functioning is related to cognition delay (regression coefficient: −20.22, P < 0.01) and physical health of their parents (regression coefficient: 0.87, P < 0.01).

Conclusions

Children with unclassified developmental delays had lower QOL and health status, and their condition had greater impacts on the family than children with typical development. Gross motor and cognition development related to the QOL and global functioning in these children.