There is limited research describing the patterns of healthcare utilization in adolescents with chronic pain. This study describes healthcare utilization in a clinical chronic pain sample, and compares the patterns of service use of this group to a community sample with intermittent pain complaints. We also investigated demographic and clinical factors that predicted healthcare visits and medication use in the clinical sample. Data on 117 adolescents (aged 12-18; n=59 clinical pain sample, n=58 community) were collected. Caregivers and adolescents reported on sociodemographics, medical visits, current medications, pain, activity limitations, and depression. As hypothesized, the clinical pain sample had higher rates of healthcare consultation on all types of medical visits (general, specialty care, complementary medicine, mental health, OT/PT), and higher medication use compared to the community sample. Regression analyses revealed that higher annual income, greater pain frequency, and higher levels of caregiver reported activity limitations were associated with a greater number of healthcare visits for the total sample. Within the clinical pain sample, higher pain frequency and greater activity limitations (caregiver-report) predicted more specialty care visits. Additionally, higher income and greater levels of depressive symptoms predicted a higher number of prescribed medications.
This study contributes to the limited available data on health service and medication use in a clinical chronic pain sample versus a community sample of adolescents. We also identify clinical factors (pain frequency, parent-reported activity limitations, depressive symptoms) and demographic factors (gender, income) associated with healthcare utilization.
adolescent; chronic pain; health service use; activity limitations
Previous research has established links between parent and child pain. Yet little is known about sex-specific parent-child pain relationships in a non-clinical population. A sample of 186 children aged 8–18 years (49% female) provided information on maternal and self bodily-pain, assessed by asking children about the presence and location of bodily pain experienced. Children also completed three laboratory pain tasks and reported on cold pressor pain intensity, pressure pain intensity and heat pain intensity. The presence of child-reported maternal pain was consistently correlated with daughters’ bodily and laboratory pain, but not with sons’ pain in bivariate analyses. Multivariate analyses controlling for child age and maternal psychological distress indicated that children of mothers with bodily pain reported more total bodily pain sites as well as greater pressure and cold pain intensity, relative to children of mothers without bodily pain. For cold pain intensity, these results differed for boys vs. girls, in that daughters reporting maternal pain evidenced significantly higher cold pain intensity compared to daughters not reporting maternal pain. No such differences were found for boys. The findings suggest that children’s perceptions of maternal pain may play a role in influencing children’s own experience of pain and that maternal pain models may affect boys and girls differently.
pain; sex differences; social learning; children
Previous research has established links between parent and child pain. However, little is known about sex-specific parent-child pain relationships in a nonclinical population. A sample of 186 children aged eight to 18 years (49% female) provided information on maternal and self bodily pain, assessed by asking children about the presence and location of bodily pain experienced. Children also completed three laboratory pain tasks and reported on cold pressor pain intensity, pressure pain intensity and heat pain intensity. The presence of child-reported maternal pain was consistently correlated with daughters’ bodily and laboratory pain, but not with sons’ pain in bivariate analyses. Multivariate analyses controlling for child age and maternal psychological distress indicated that children of mothers with bodily pain reported more total bodily pain sites as well as greater pressure and cold pain intensity, relative to children of mothers without bodily pain. For cold pain intensity, these results differed for boys versus girls, in that daughters reporting maternal pain evidenced significantly higher cold pain intensity compared with daughters not reporting maternal pain. No such differences were found for boys. The findings suggest that children’s perceptions of maternal pain may play a role in influencing children’s own experience of pain, and that maternal pain models may affect boys and girls differently.
Children; Pain; Sex differences; Social learning
Obesity is associated with functional disability in adults with chronic pain, but less is known about obesity among youth with chronic pain. The purpose of this study was to 1) identify the prevalence of overweight and obesity in children and adolescents receiving treatment for chronic pain, and 2) examine associations between Body Mass Index (BMI), pain intensity, and activity limitations in this population.
Data was obtained from records of 118 patients, ages 8 to 18, seen in a multidisciplinary pediatric pain clinic. Information about age, gender, pain problem, duration and severity, medical diagnoses, medications, height and weight were collected from medical records and intake questionnaires. The CDC’s pediatric BMI calculator was used to obtain percentile and category (underweight, healthy weight, overweight, obese). Children and parents completed the Child Activity Limitations Interview-21 (CALI-21), a self-report measure of activity limitations.
A significantly higher rate of overweight and obesity was observed among youth with chronic pain compared to a normative sample. BMI percentile was predictive of concurrent limitations in vigorous activities, according to parent report.
BMI percentile and weight status may contribute to activity limitations among children and adolescents with chronic pain. Weight status is an important factor to consider in the context of treatment of chronic pain and disability in children and adolescents.
obesity; Body Mass Index (BMI); activity; pediatric; chronic pain
Little is known about how sociodemographic factors relate to children’s chronic pain. This paper describes the pain, health, and sociodemographic characteristics of a cohort of children presenting to an urban tertiary chronic pain clinic and documents the role of age, sex and minority status on pain-related characteristics. A multidisciplinary, tertiary clinic specializing in pediatric chronic pain. Two hundred and nineteen patients and their parents were given questionnaire packets to fill out prior to their intake appointment which included demographic information, clinical information, Child Health Questionnaire – Parent Report, Functional Disability Index – Parent Report, Child Somatization Index – Parent Report, and a Pain Intensity Scale. Additional clinical information was obtained from patients’ medical records via chart review. This clinical sample exhibited compromised functioning in a number of domains, including school attendance, bodily pain, and health compared to normative data. Patients also exhibited high levels of functional disability. Minority children evidenced decreased sleep, increased somatization, higher levels of functional disability, and increased pain intensity compared to Caucasians. Caucasians were more likely to endorse headaches than minorities, and girls were more likely than boys to present with fibromyalgia. Younger children reported better functioning than did teens. The results indicate that sociodemographic factors are significantly associated with several pain-related characteristics in children with chronic pain. Further research must address potential mechanisms of these relationships and applications for treatment.
Chronic pain; pediatric; clinical cohort; ethnic differences
Objectives: To examine whether an association exists between parent and child pain, and, if so, whether this relationship persists after adjusting for psychosocial difficulties in the child.
Methods: 1326 schoolchildren took part in a questionnaire based, cross sectional survey. Parents of study participants were sent a postal questionnaire. Occurrence of body pain was ascertained using blank body manikins and, in children, psychosocial factors were assessed using the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire. Three child-parent pain relationships were examined: any child pain with any parental pain or with parental widespread pain; and child low back pain with parental low back pain.
Results: The risk of child pain associated with parental reporting of pain was minor, and non-significant. Even when both parents reported widespread pain, the relative risk of pain in the child, after adjusting for age and psychosocial difficulties, was 1.2 (95% CI 0.5 to 3.2).
Conclusions: Parental pain is not a risk for child pain. Pain behaviour is not learned. Rather, child pain is probably attributable to individual factors and the social environment.
The purpose of this multicenter study was to confirm the validity and reliability of the Pediatric Cardiac Quality of Life Inventory (PCQLI).
Seven centers recruited pediatric patients (8–18 years of age) with heart disease (HD) and their parents to complete the PCQLI and generic health-related quality of life (Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory [PedsQL]) and non–quality of life (Self-Perception Profile for Children [SPPC]/Self-Perception Profile for Adolescents [SPPA] and Youth Self-Report [YSR]/Child Behavior Checklist [CBCL]) tools. PCQLI construct validity was assessed through correlations of PCQLI scores between patients and parents and with severity of congenital HD, medical care utilization, and PedsQL, SPPC/SPPA, and YSR/CBCL scores. PCQLI test-retest reliability was evaluated.
The study enrolled 1605 patient-parent pairs. Construct validity was substantiated by the association of lower PCQLI scores with Fontan palliation and increased numbers of cardiac operations, hospital admissions, and physician visits (P < .001); moderate to good correlations between patient and parent PCQLI scores (r = 0.41–0.61; P <.001); and fair to good correlations between PCQLI total scores and PedsQL total (r = 0.70–0.76), SPPC/SPPA global self-worth (r = 0.43–0.46), YSR/CBCL total competency (r = 0.28–0.37), and syndrome and Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition-oriented scale (r = −0.58 to −0.30; P < .001) scores. Test-retest reliability correlations were excellent (r = 0.78–0.90; P < .001).
PCQLI scores are valid and reliable for children and adolescents with congenital and acquired HD and may be useful for future research and clinical management. Pediatrics 2010;126:498–508
congenital heart disease; acquired heart disease; health-related quality of life; reliability; validity
Child and adolescent mental health problems are common in primary healthcare settings. However, few parents of children with mental health problems express concerns about these problems during consultations. Based on parental views, we aimed to create quality of care measures for child and adolescent mental health in primary care and develop consensus about the importance of these quality standards within primary care.
Quality Standards were developed using an iterative approach involving four phases: 1) 34 parents with concerns about their child’s emotional health or behaviour were recruited from a range of community settings including primary care practices to participate in focus group discussions, followed by validation groups or interviews. 2) Preliminary Quality Standards were generated that fully represented the parents’ experiences and were refined following feedback from an expert parent nominal group. 3) 55 experts, including parents and representatives from voluntary organisations, across five panels participated in a modified two-stage Delphi study to develop consensus on the importance of the Quality Standards. The panels comprised general practitioners, other community-based professionals, child and adolescent psychiatrists, other child and adolescent mental health professionals and public health and policy specialists. 4) The final set of Quality Standards was piloted with 52 parents in primary care.
In the Delphi process, all five panels agreed that 10 of 31 Quality Standards were important. Although four panels rated 25–27 statements as important, the general practitioner panel rated 12 as important. The final 10 Quality Standards reflected healthcare domains involving access, confidentiality for young people, practitioner knowledge, communication, continuity of care, and referral to other services. Parents in primary care agreed that all 10 statements were important.
It is feasible to develop a set of Quality Standards to assess mental healthcare provision for children and adolescents seen within primary healthcare services. Primary care practitioners should be aware of parental perspectives about quality of care as these may influence help-seeking behaviours.
Although there are many clinical programs designed to bring humor into pediatric hospitals, there has been very little research with children or adolescents concerning the specific utility of humor for children undergoing stressful or painful procedures. Rx Laughter™, a non-profit organization interested in the use of humor for healing, collaborated with UCLA to collect preliminary data on a sample of 18 children aged 7–16 years. Participants watched humorous video-tapes before, during and after a standardized pain task that involved placing a hand in cold water. Pain appraisal (ratings of pain severity) and pain tolerance (submersion time) were recorded and examined in relation to humor indicators (number of laughs/smiles during each video and child ratings of how funny the video was). Whereas humor indicators were not significantly associated with pain appraisal or tolerance, the group demonstrated significantly greater pain tolerance while viewing funny videos than when viewing the videos immediately before or after the cold-water task. The results suggest that humorous distraction is useful to help children and adolescents tolerate painful procedures. Further study is indicated to explore the specific mechanism of this benefit.
children; distraction; laughter; pain
Pain catastrophizing is an important variable in the context of acute and chronic pain. The neurophysiological correlates of pain catastrophizing, however, have not been rigorously evaluated. We examined the relationship between trait pain catastrophizing and morning salivary cortisol levels before and following a 45-minute laboratory pain testing session in healthy, pain-free (n=22) and temporomandibular disorder (TMD) participants (n=39). We also examined whether TMD patients evidenced generalized hyperalgesia and hypercortisolism. Pain catastrophizing was associated with a flattened morning salivary cortisol profile in the context of pain testing, irrespective of pain status. Cortisol profiles did not differ between healthy and TMD participants. TMD was associated with mechanical hyperalgesia only at the masseter. These data are the first to show an association between pain catastrophizing and elevated salivary cortisol profiles in the context of standardized experimental pain testing. These findings in both healthy individuals and those with chronic orofacial pain suggest that aberrant adrenocortical responses to pain may serve as a neurophysiologic pathway by which pain catastrophizing enhances vulnerability for development of chronic pain and maintains and/or exaggerates existing pain and associated morbidity.
Neurophysiological mechanisms by which pain catastrophizing is related to acute and chronic pain recently have come under empirical study. Understanding of these mechanisms has the unique potential to shed light on key central nervous system factors that mediate catastrophizing-pain relations and therapeutic benefits associated with changes in catastrophizing and related cognitive processes.
pain catastrophizing; pain threshold; temporomandibular disorders; HPA; pressure pain; thermal pain
The Functional Disability Inventory (FDI; Walker LS, Greene JW. The functional disability inventory: measuring a neglected dimension of child health status. J Pediatr Psychol 1991;16:39–58) assesses activity limitations in children and adolescents with a variety of pediatric conditions. This study evaluated the psychometric properties of the FDI in pediatric pain patients. Participants included 596 patients with chronic abdominal pain, ages 8–17, and a subset of their parents (n = 151) who completed the FDI and measures of pain, limitations in school activities, and somatic and depressive symptoms at a clinic visit. Test–retest reliability was high at 2 weeks (child report, .74; parent-report, .64) and moderate at 3 months (child report, .48; parent report, .39). Internal consistency reliability was excellent, ranging from .86 to .91. Validity was supported by significant correlations of child- and parent-report FDI scores with measures of school-related disability, pain, and somatic symptoms. Study results add to a growing body of empirical literature supporting the reliability and validity of the FDI for functional assessment of pediatric patients with chronic pain.
Functional Disability Inventory; Pain; Validity; Reliability; Functional impairment; Children
Adolescence is a time of increasing risk for some anxiety disorders. Scant data exist on adolescent anxiety in emergency department (ED) settings. We sought to characterize select clinical characteristics and healthcare utilization associated with anxiety disorders in a pediatric ED.
We screened a convenience sample of 100 adolescent-parent dyads presenting to the ED for the presence of child anxiety disorders using the 5-item Screen for Child Anxiety Related Emotional Disorders, parent (SCARED-P) and child (SCARED-C) versions. Additional demographic and clinical data were also collected.
SCARED-P and SCARED-C screens identified probable anxiety disorder(s) in 26% to 33% of adolescent participants, respectively. Correlates of positive SCARED-C screens were female gender, asthma, presenting complaint involving headache or migraine, and school absenteeism due to physical problems. Correlates of positive SCARED-P screens were lower parental educational level, presenting complaint involving headache or migraine, and more medical specialty and total medical visits. Few anxious adolescents had received mental health services in the past six months. In multivariate models, female gender was independently associated with SCARED-C total score, and presenting complaint involving headache or migraine was independently associated with SCARED-P total score.
The current pilot data suggest anxiety disorders are more prevalent among adolescent ED patients than in the general population, but largely untreated. Several demographic and clinical variables may help to identify occult anxiety disorders. Greater awareness of anxiety disorders in this population may assist in redirecting a pattern of low use of mental health services but higher overall healthcare utilization.
anxiety disorders; pediatric psychology; emergency medicine; mental health services
Despite frequent targeting of health beliefs in pediatric chronic pain treatment interventions, there are currently no reliable and valid self-efficacy measures for children with chronic pain and their parents. The current study examined the psychometric properties of parent and child versions of a self-efficacy measure related to the child functioning normally when in pain. Pediatric pain patients, 9–18 years of age, and a caregiver completed questionnaires before an initial tertiary care clinic appointment. The 67 patients in our sample had an average of 1.7 pain locations, including abdominal pain (43.3%), headaches (50.7%), body pain (25.4%), back pain (23.9%), limb pain (20.9%), and/or chest pain (9.0%). Reliability for the new measures was excellent; the Cronbach's alpha was .89 for the 7 child items and .90 for the 7 parent items. Strong evidence for construct validity was also obtained as 23 of the 27 hypothesized correlations were confirmed. As predicted, parent and child ratings of increased self-efficacy for the child functioning normally when in pain were significantly correlated with each other, and to parent reports of fewer problems functioning due to physical or emotional problems; parent reports of fewer somatic, behavioral or emotional symptoms; parent reports of increased self-esteem, and unrelated to child pain, age and gender. Additionally, child ratings of increased self-efficacy were significantly correlated with child reports of increased self-esteem and fewer somatic symptoms. Replication with a larger sample size, more complex modeling, and prospective studies are indicated.
Pediatric chronic pain; Self-efficacy; Health belief measures
To examine relationships among trait anxiety sensitivity, state task-specific anticipatory anxiety, and laboratory pain responses in healthy children and adolescents.
Participants (N=118, 49.2% female, ages 8-18 years) completed a measure of anxiety sensitivity and rated anticipatory anxiety prior to undergoing thermal, pressure, and cold pain tasks. Linear and logistic regressions were used to test the hypothesis that anxiety sensitivity and anticipatory anxiety would predict incremental variance in pain response after controlling for sex, age, and anxious symptoms.
Anticipatory anxiety accounted for 35-38% of unique variance in pain report across tasks, and 10% of unique variance in thermal tolerance. Anxiety sensitivity was unrelated to pain responses.
Task-specific anxiety is an important predictor of pain report and, in certain cases, pain tolerance. Interventions designed to reduce task-specific anticipatory anxiety may help reduce pain responses in children and adolescents.
laboratory pain; anxiety; anxiety sensitivity; children; adolescents
Chronic or recurrent pain is a widespread health issue that affects a large proportion of the population, including adults and children. Family factors in the development of pain have received increasing attention of late as research has shown that pain tends to run in families, A burgeoning literature has also demonstrated the influence of parental factors in children’s responses to chronic and laboratory pain. This review attempts to integrate: first,) the literature documenting an association between parent and child pain both within the clinical chronic pain and laboratory pain literatures; and second,) research accounting for likely mechanisms explaining the parent-child pain association. To this end, we present a conceptual model that incorporates a number of parent and child specific characteristics, such as parental responses, coping and gender role socialization as well as broader socio-demographic factors such as parent and child age and sex, family functioning, socioeconomic status, and race/ethnicity. It is anticipated that consideration of such variables will lead to needed research exploring the mechanisms of parent-child pain relationships, and to interventions designed to prevent and ameliorate child pain sensitivity when it correlates with poor adaptation to pain.
children; pain; family; parents
The prevalence of persistent and recurrent pain among children and adolescents has important economic, social and psychological repercussions. The impact of chronic pain in children extends beyond the affected individuals – more than one-third of parents of children with pain report clinically significant levels of stress and depression. Although many pain-related psychological factors have been examined in chronic pediatric pain populations, much of that research involved clinical samples. Community-based research, however, is necessary to uncover the way pain is experienced by youth, regardless of whether treatment is sought or is available. This study aimed to ascertain the lifetime prevalence of pediatric pain in a Canadian community-based sample, and to explore age and sex differences in children who report persistent pain and those who do not with respect to several constructs believed to play important roles in the development and maintenance of persistent pain.
Very few studies have investigated the psychological factors associated with the pain experiences of children and adolescents in community samples.
To examine the lifetime prevalence of, and psychological variables associated with, persistent pain in a community sample of children and adolescents, and to explore differences according to sex, age and pain history.
Participants completed the Childhood Anxiety Sensitivity Index (CASI), the Child Pain Anxiety Symptoms Scale (CPASS), the Multidimensional Anxiety Scale for Children-10 (MASC-10), the Pain Catastrophizing Scale for Children (PCS-C) and a pain history questionnaire that assessed chronicity and pain frequency. After research ethics board approval, informed consent/assent was obtained from 1022 individuals recruited to participate in a study conducted at the Ontario Science Centre (Toronto, Ontario).
Of the 1006 participants (54% female, mean [± SD] age 11.6±2.7 years) who provided complete data, 27% reported having experienced pain that lasted for three months or longer. A 2×2×2 (pain history, age and sex) multivariate ANOVA was conducted, with the total scores on the CASI, the CPASS, the MASC-10 and the PCS-C as dependent variables. Girls with a history of persistent pain expressed higher levels of anxiety sensitivity (P<0.001) and pain catastrophizing (P<0.001) than both girls without a pain history and boys regardless of pain history. This same pattern of results was found for anxiety and pain anxiety in the older, but not the younger, age group.
Boys and girls appear to differ in terms of how age and pain history relate to the expression of pain-related psychological variables. Given the prevalence of persistent pain found in the study, more research is needed regarding the developmental implications of persistent pain in childhood and adolescence.
Children; Persistent pain; Psychosocial factors; Sex differences
This study examines the rate of utilization of mental health services in children and adolescents with 22q11DS relative to their remarkably high rate of psychiatric disorders and behavior problems. Seventy-two children and adolescents with 22q11DS were participants; their parents completed the Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Children (DISC) and the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL). The results indicated that 22q11DS children and adolescents have higher rates of psychopathology than the general pediatric population, with ADHD and anxiety disorders being the most common. However, among youth with 22q11DS, those with psychopathology are often no more likely to receive either pharmacological or non-pharmacological mental health care than those without a given psychiatric diagnosis. Thus, although psychopathology is fairly common in this sample, many children with 22q11DS may not be receiving needed psychiatric care. These results have significant implications for these children and their families, as well as for the health care providers who treat them. In particular, the results may suggest a need for careful screening of psychiatric disorders that are likely to affect this population as well, as making appropriate treatment recommendations to remedy childhood mental health problems. Since these children face an extraordinarily high risk of psychoses in late adolescence/adulthood, treatment of childhood psychopathology could be crucial in mitigating the risk/consequences of major psychiatric illnesses in later life.
22q11DS; Velocardiofacial syndrome; DiGeorge syndrome; children/adolescents; psychopathology; service utilization
Noncardiac chest pain (NCCP) is a common and persistent problem for children and adolescents; typically there is no clear medical cause. To date, no psychological intervention has been studied for chest pain in a pediatric sample.
a) We developed a brief psychological treatment for chest pain and associated worry in children and adolescents with NCCP. This program includes psychoeducation, breathing retraining, cognitive coping strategies, and one session of parent education and coaching regarding the impact of reinforcement on pain and coping behaviors. b) We treated nine youngsters with chronic NCCP, assessing pain, somatization, disability, anxiety and depressive symptoms, and coping before, after, and six months following treatment.
Following treatment there was a significant decrease in chest pain and somatization. Benefits were maintained at six-month follow-up. There was no decrease in associated psychological symptoms.
A brief psychological treatment for pediatric NCCP is feasible to administer and may help alleviate symptoms of pediatric NCCP. Further study in a randomized trial is needed.
Chest pain; pediatric; somatization; cognitive behavior therapy; coping
Research in the field of pediatric pain has largely ignored the role of fathers in their children’s pain experiences. The first objective of the present study was to examine the effect of the presence of mothers versus fathers on children’s subjective ratings, facial expressions and physiological responses to acute pain. The second objective was to examine whether child and parent sex influence parents’ proxy ratings of their children’s pain. The final objective was to compare levels of agreement between mothers’ and fathers’ assessments of their children’s pain. Participants included 73 children (37 boys, 36 girls), four to 12 years of age, along with 32 fathers and 41 mothers. Children undertook the cold pressor pain task while observed by one of their parents. During the task, the children’s heart rates and facial expressions were recorded. Children provided self-reports and parents provided proxy reports of child pain intensity using the seven-point Faces Pain Scale. Neither child nor parent sex had a significant impact on children’s subjective reports, facial expressions or heart rates in response to acute pain. Fathers gave their sons higher pain ratings than their daughters, whereas mothers’ ratings of their sons’ and daughters’ pain did not differ. Kappa statistics and t tests revealed that fathers tended to be more accurate judges of their children’s pain than mothers. Overall, this research highlights the importance of examining both parent and child sex differences in pediatric pain research.
Agreement; Assessment; Child; Cold pressor; Pain; Parent
Knee pain is common during adolescence. Adolescents and their parents may think that knee pain is benign and self-limiting and therefore avoid seeking medical care. However, long-term prognosis of knee pain is not favourable and treatment seems to offer greater reductions in pain compared to a “wait-and-see” approach. The purpose of this study was to describe the determinants of care-seeking behaviour among adolescents with current knee pain and investigate what types of treatment are initiated.
An online questionnaire was forwarded to 2,846 adolescents aged 15–19 in four upper secondary schools. The questionnaire contained questions on age, gender, height, weight, currently painful body regions, frequency of knee pain, health-related quality of life measured by the EuroQol 5-dimensions, sports participation and if they had sought medical care. Adolescents who reported current knee pain at least monthly or more frequently were telephoned. The adolescents were asked about pain duration, onset of knee pain (traumatic or insidious) and if they were currently being treated for their knee pain.
504 adolescents currently reported at least monthly knee pain. 59% of these had sought medical care and 18% were currently under medical treatment . A longer pain duration and higher pain severity increased the odds of seeking medical care. Females with traumatic onset of knee pain were more likely to have sought medical care than females with insidious onset of knee pain. Females with traumatic onset of knee pain and increased pain severity were more likely to be undergoing medical treatment. The most frequently reported treatments were the combination of exercises and orthotics (68% of those undergoing medical treatment).
Females with insidious onset of knee pain do not seek medical care as often as those with traumatic onset and adolescents of both genders with insidious onset are less likely to be under medical treatment. These findings are important as knee pain with insidious onset has similar consequences as knee pain with traumatic onset regarding pain severity, pain duration and reductions in health-related quality of life.
Adolescents; Knee pain; Care-seeking; Treatment
The objective of this study was to test the primary hypothesis that parent proxy-report of pediatric health-related quality of life (HRQL) would prospectively predict pediatric healthcare costs over a two-year period. The exploratory hypothesis tested anticipated that a relatively small group of children would account for a disproportionately large percent of healthcare costs.
317 children (157 girls) ages 2 to 18 years, members of a managed care health plan with prospective payment participated in a two-year prospective longitudinal study. At Time 1, parents reported child HRQL using the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory™ (PedsQL™ 4.0) Generic Core Scales, and chronic health condition status. Costs, based on health plan utilization claims and encounters, were derived for 6, 12, and 24 months.
In multiple linear regression equations, Time 1 parent proxy-reported HRQL prospectively accounted for significant variance in healthcare costs at 6, 12, and 24 months. Adjusted regression models that included both HRQL scores and chronic health condition status accounted for 10.1%, 14.4%, and 21.2% of the variance in healthcare costs at 6, 12, and 24 months. Parent proxy-reported HRQL and chronic health condition status together defined a 'high risk' group, constituting 8.7% of the sample and accounting for 37.4%, 59.2%, and 62% of healthcare costs at 6, 12, and 24 months. The high risk group's per member per month healthcare costs were, on average, 12 times that of other enrollees' at 24 months.
While these findings should be further tested in a larger sample, our data suggest that parent proxy-reported HRQL can be used to prospectively predict healthcare costs. When combined with chronic health condition status, parent proxy-reported HRQL can identify an at risk group of children as candidates for proactive care coordination.
Health-related quality of life; PedsQL™; prediction; healthcare costs; managed care.
Limited data are available on the use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) by children and adolescents in the United States and factors associated with CAM use among the pediatric population.
Utilizing the 2007 National Health Interview Survey data among individuals less than 18 years of age (n=9417), we compared CAM users (excluding those using vitamins and minerals) and non-CAM users. Using bivariable and multivariable logistic regression models, we examined independent associations of CAM use with sociodemographic factors, prescription medication use, delays in health care due to access difficulties, and common medical conditions/symptoms.
In an adjusted multivariable logistic model, CAM users were more likely than non-CAM users to be: adolescents rather than infants or toddlers (adjusted odds ratio, AOR 1.61 [1.11–2.34]); live in the West (AOR 2.05 [1.62–2.59]), Northeast (AOR 1.36 [1.02–1.80]), or Midwest (AOR 1.35 [1.04–1.74]) compared to the South; more likely to have a parent with a college education (AOR 4.33 (2.92–6.42)) and more likely to use prescription medication (AOR 1.51 [1.19–1.92]). Pediatric CAM users were more likely to have the following medical conditions/symptoms: anxiety or stress (AOR 2.54 [1.89–3.42]), dermatologic conditions (AOR 1.35 [1.03–1.78]), musculoskeletal conditions (AOR 1.94 [1.31–2.87]), and sinusitis (AOR 1.54 [1.11–2.14]). Use of CAM by a parent was strongly associated with the child’s use of CAM (AOR 3.83 [3.04–4.84]).
In 2007, pediatric CAM users were more likely to take prescription medications, have a parent that used CAM, and have chronic conditions such as anxiety or stress, musculoskeletal conditions, dermatologic conditions, or sinusitis. Research is required to guide pediatricians in making recommendations on CAM modalities for children including potential risk and/or benefits, and interactions with conventional therapies.
complementary therapies; infant; child; adolescent
Adolescents with chronic pain frequently report sleep disturbances, particularly short sleep duration, night wakings, and poor sleep quality. Prior research has been limited by assessment of subjectively reported sleep only and lack of data on daily relationships between sleep and pain. The current study utilized multilevel modeling to compare daily associations between sleep and pain in adolescents with chronic pain and healthy adolescents. Ninety-seven adolescents (n=39 chronic pain; n=58 healthy) aged 12–18, 70.1% female participated. Adolescents completed pain diary ratings (0–10 NRS) and actigraphic sleep monitoring for 10 days. Actigraphic sleep variables (duration, efficiency, WASO) and self-reported sleep quality were tested as predictors of next-day pain, and daytime pain was tested as a predictor of sleep that night. Effects of age, gender, study group, and depressive symptoms on daily associations between sleep and pain were also tested. Multivariate analyses revealed that nighttime sleep (p<.001) and minutes awake after sleep onset (WASO) (p<.05) predicted next-day pain, with longer sleep duration and higher WASO associated with higher pain. Contrary to hypotheses, neither nighttime sleep quality nor sleep efficiency predicted pain the following day. The interaction between nighttime sleep efficiency and study group was significant, with adolescents with pain showing stronger associations between sleep efficiency and next day pain than healthy participants (p=.05). Contrary to hypotheses, daytime pain did not predict nighttime sleep. Daily associations between pain and sleep suggest that further work is needed to identify specific adolescent sleep behaviors (e.g., compensatory sleep behaviors) that may be targeted in interventions.
pain; chronic pain; actigraphy; adolescents; sleep; multilevel-modeling
Studies in adults have demonstrated a relationship between lowered heart rate variability (HRV) and poor health. However, less is known about the role of autonomic arousal in children’s well-being. The aim of the current study was to examine resting HRV in children with chronic pain compared to healthy control children and, further, to examine children’s HRV following a series of acute experimental pain tasks in both groups. Participants included 104 healthy control children and 48 children with chronic pain aged 8–17 years. The laboratory session involved a 5-minute baseline electrocardiogram followed by four pain induction tasks: evoked pressure, cold pressor, focal pressure, and a conditioned pain modulation task. After the tasks were complete, a 5-minute post-task electrocardiogram recording was taken. Spectral analysis was used to capture high-frequency normalized power and the ratio of low-to-high frequency band power, signifying cardiac vagal tone and sympathetic balance, respectively. Results revealed that children with chronic pain had significantly lower resting HRV (signified by low high-frequency normalized power and high ratio of low-to-high frequency band power) compared to healthy children; moreover, a significant interaction between groups and time revealed that children with chronic pain displayed a static HRV response to the pain session compared to healthy children, whose HRV was reduced concomitant with the pain session. These findings suggest that children with chronic pain may have a sustained stress response with minimal variability in response to new acute pain stressors.
laboratory pain; pediatric pain; cold pressor; experimental pain; childhood pain; stress task
The body of knowledge concerning shoulder kinematics in patients with rotator cuff tears is increasing. However, the level of understanding regarding how pain and tear size affect these kinematic patterns is minimal.
To identify relationships between pain associated with a full-thickness rotator cuff tear, tear size, and scapulohumeral rhythm (SHR) and to determine whether pain and tear size serve as predictors of SHR.
A test-retest design was used to quantify pain and SHR before and after a subacromial lidocaine injection. Correlation and multivariate analyses were used to identify relationships among pain, tear size, and SHR.
Orthopaedic biomechanics research laboratory.
Patients or Other Participants:
Fifteen patients (age range, 40–75 years) with diagnosed full-thickness rotator cuff tears participated. They were experiencing pain at the time of testing.
Shoulder kinematic data were collected with an electromagnetic tracking system before and after the patient received a lidocaine injection.
Main Outcome Measure(s):
Pain was rated using a visual analog scale. Three-dimensional scapular kinematics and glenohumeral elevation were assessed. Scapular kinematics included anterior-posterior tilt, medial-lateral tilt, and upward-downward rotation. A regression model was used to calculate SHR (scapular kinematics to glenohumeral elevation) for phases of humeral elevation and lowering.
Linear relationships were identified between initial pain scores and SHR and between tear size and SHR, representing an increased reliance on scapular motion with increasing pain and tear size. Pain was identified as an independent predictor of SHR, whereas significant findings for the effect of tear size on SHR and the interaction between pain and tear size were limited.
We noted an increased reliance on scapular contributions to overall humeral elevation with increasing levels of pain and rotator cuff tear size. Pain associated with a rotator cuff tear serves as a primary contributor to the kinematic patterns exhibited in patients with rotator cuff tears.
shoulder kinematics; scapula; biomechanics