Purpose Improvement in survival of pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) has increased the attention to quality of life (QoL) . QoL is impaired during maintenance treatment, but little is known about QoL during induction therapy. Identification of patients with poor QoL during induction will provide opportunities for early interventions, and may subsequently improve future QoL. This national multi-center study aimed to assess QoL and its determinants during ALL induction treatment. Methods Proxy reports of the Child Health Questionnaire (CHQ) and the PedsQL cancer version were collected. Child, treatment, and parental characteristics were analyzed as potential determinants in a multiple regression model. Results One hundred thirty parents of children participated (response rate 82 %), median child age was 5.7 years and 48 % were female. QoL, as measured with the CHQ, was significantly lower than the norm, the effect sizes were large, and the differences were clinically relevant. Physical QoL was more often affected than psychosocial QoL. Regression models could be constructed for 4/ 10 CHQ scales and 6/ 8 PedsQL cancer scales, accounting for 7 to 36 % of the variance in scores. Impaired QoL was most often associated with older children, girls, and time since diagnosis. Also, father respondents seem to have a lower QoL perception compared to mother respondents although this needs to be confirmed in future research. Conclusions Specific counseling for subsets of patients with a higher risk of low QoL during the early phases of therapy is warranted.

Acute lymphoblastic leukemia, Cancer, Childhood, Oncology, Pediatric, Quality of life
dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00520-014-2349-2, hdl.handle.net/1765/63766
Supportive Care in Cancer
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

van Litsenburg, R.R, Huisman, J, Pieters, R, Verhaak, C.M, Kaspers, G.J.L, & Gemke, R.J. (2014). Determinants of quality of life during induction therapy in pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Supportive Care in Cancer. doi:10.1007/s00520-014-2349-2