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Psychosocial Adjustment of Children with Chronic Illness: An Evaluation of Three Models

GARTSTEIN, MARIA A. PH.D.; SHORT, AMY D. B.A.; VANNATTA, KATHRYN PH.D.; NOLL, ROBERT B. PH.D.

Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics: June 1999 - Volume 20 - Issue 3 - p 157–163
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
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This study was designed to assess social, emotional, and behavioral functioning of children with chronic illness and to evaluate three models addressing the impact of chronic illness on psychosocial functioning: discrete disease, noncategorical, and mixed. Families of children with cancer, sickle cell disease, hemophilia, and juvenile rheumatoid arthritis participated, along with families of classroom comparison peers without a chronic illness who had the closest date of birth and were of the same race and gender (COMPs). Mothers, fathers, and children provided information regarding current functioning of the child with chronic illness or the COMP child. Child Behavior Checklist and Children's Depression Inventory scores were examined. Results provided support for the noncategorical model. Thus, the mixed model evaluated in this study requires modifications before its effectiveness as a classification system can be demonstrated.

Division of Hematology/Oncology, Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio

Address for reprints: Robert B. Noll, Ph.D., Hematology/Oncology, Children's Hospital Medical Center, 3333 Burnet Avenue, Cincinnati, OH 45229-3039.

Acknowledgments. The authors gratefully acknowledge the valued contribution of many individuals affiliated with the University of Cincinnati and Children's Hospital Medical Center who made this project possible. This work was supported by an Individual National Service Award from NIMH to the first author (M.A.G.).

© 1999 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.