Psychosocial distress and functioning of Greek youth with cystic fibrosis: a cross-sectional study
Springer Science and Business Media LLC -- BioPsychoSocial Medicine
DOI 10.1186/1751-0759-8-13
Keyword(s)
  1. Children and adolescents
  2. Cystic fibrosis
  3. Family functioning
  4. Psychopathology
  5. Self-esteem
  6. Social adjustment
Abstract(s)

Background

To assess psychosocial functioning and distress of children and adolescents with cystic fibrosis compared to healthy controls.

Methods

Thirty-six patients with cystic fibrosis aged 8–18 years (24 boys, mean age ± SD: 11.5 ± 2.6 years) and 31 sex- and age-matched healthy control subjects (18 boys, mean age ± SD: 12 ± 2.5 years) were enrolled in the study. In order to assess the self-esteem, social adjustment, and family functioning of these young people, the Culture-free Self-esteem Inventory, the Social Adjustment Scale–Self-Report, and the Family Assessment Device were administered. Emotional/ behavioral problems were assessed through the Youth Self Report and the Child Behavior Checklist given to both the subjects and their parents.

Results

No significant differences were found for self-esteem between the two study groups. Regarding social adjustment, children with cystic fibrosis reported significantly worse friendship and overall adjustment (P < 0.05). Moreover, no difference was found in the levels of family functioning between the two groups. No significant differences between the groups were found in emotional/ behavioral problems from the self-reports. On the contrary, parents of children with cystic fibrosis reported significantly higher levels of withdrawal/ depression, thought problems, and delinquent behavior (P ≤ 0.01) as compared to controls.

Conclusions

Children and adolescents with cystic fibrosis appear to be a psychosocially vulnerable group. A biopsychosocial approach should emphasize the assessment and treatment of the psychosocial distress of these patients alongside multiple somatic treatments.