Objective: Given the social constraints imposed by a gluten-free diet, it can be hypothesized that children with celiac disease (CD) living in the United States have a reduced health-related quality of life (HRQOL); however, there is no validated CD-specific HRQOL instrument for children living in the United States. The goals of this study were to develop and validate a CD-specific HRQOL instrument for children 8 to 18 years of age with CD and to report HRQOL in these children using both generic- and disease-specific instruments.
Methods: This was a prospective study using focus group methodology to develop a CD-specific HRQOL instrument that was then administered to children 8 to 18 years of age with CD living throughout the United States. Instrument validation methods included construct, convergent, and divergent validities.
Results: Two instruments were developed: CD-specific pediatric HRQOL instrument (CDPQOL) 8 to 12 and CDPQOL 13 to 18. A total of 181 children with CD completed the CDPQOL as well as a comparator generic instrument. Exploratory factor analysis restructured the CDPQOL and reduced the total number of items. The CDPQOL showed a moderate agreement with the Psychosocial dimensions of the generic instrument confirming convergent validity and low-to-moderate agreement with the Physical Health Summary dimension of the generic instrument confirming divergent validity.
Conclusions: The CDPQOL, consisting of 13 to 17 questions, is a validated instrument for the measurement of HRQOL in children 8 to 18 years of age with CD living in the United States.