Advances in Defining, Conceptualizing, and Measuring Quality of Life in Pediatric Patients With Cancer
Purpose/Objectives: To describe the notable advances in defining, conceptualizing, and measuring quality of life (QOL) in pediatric patients with cancer since the 1995 Oncology Nursing Society's State-of-the-Knowledge Conference on QOL.
Data Sources: Published research, clinical papers, and hospital policies.
Data Synthesis: QOL ratings from children and adolescents are being solicited increasingly in research and clinical assessments during treatment and survivorship using various methods but are not solicited from terminally ill patients; qualitatively induced models of pediatric cancer-related QOL now are being tested using quantitative methods.
Conclusions: Children aged five years and older are able to report their cancer-related QOL; reliable and valid QOL instruments exist for all phases of treatment except end of life.
Implications for Nursing: Nurses can involve children and adolescents in rating their QOL for research and clinical purposes and can apply theory-based QOL models to direct care.