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A comparison of the performance of the EQ-5D and the EQ-5D-Y Health-Related Quality of Life instruments in South African children

Jelsma, Jennifer

International Journal of Rehabilitation Research: June 2010 - Volume 33 - Issue 2 - p 172-177
doi: 10.1097/MRR.0b013e32832bb0f7
Brief research reports

The aim of this study was to investigate the performance of the recent EQ-5D-Y instrument compared with the standard EQ-5D in assessing the health-related quality of life of high school children in Cape Town. Either the EQ-5D or the EQ-5D-Y was given to high school children. The sample consisted of 521 respondents. The EQ-5D-Y was found to be superior in that there were statistically significant fewer missed item responses, both in the domains and the health status Visual Analogue Scale (VAS). A grade differential was noted with more missing responses in the lower grades, particularly with the EQ-5D. More children reported problems with the mobility, self-care and anxiety and depression domains when responding to the EQ-5D-Y. In addition, the mean VAS score was marginally greater using the EQ-5D-Y. The EQ-5D-Y performed better than the EQ-5D, particularly in the younger children, and should be used in early secondary school. The EQ-5D-Y generated a wider range of responses in both the domains and the VAS, and may be more responsive than the Adult version. The two seem to give different results and consequently should be considered two related but separate instruments.

School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, University of Cape Town, South Africa

Correspondence to Associate Professor Jennifer Jelsma, PhD, Division of Physiotherapy, School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Cape Town, Anzio Road, Observatory 7925, South Africa

Tel: +27 21 406 6402; fax: +27 21 448 8157;


Received 22 April 2008 Accepted 4 March 2009

© 2010 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.