Assessment of health status in adolescents with spina bifida in the West Bank, Palestine: sense of coherence and self-perceived health

Nahal, Maha Sudki Hmeidan
Wigert, Helena
Imam, Asma
Axelsson, Asa B.
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Taylor & Francis
ABSTRACT Purpose: To assess self-perceived health and sense of coherence (SOC) in adolescents with spina bifida (SB) in the West Bank, Palestine, compared to a healthy reference group. Further, to assess the association between impairment levels in the adolescents with SB and their self-perceived health and SOC. Methods: Fifty adolescents with SB and 150 healthy adolescents completed measures of self-perceived health – the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory (PedsQLTM 4.0) – and SOC. The rehabilitation center nurses identified the physical impairments of the adolescents with SB from their medical records, and classified them by impairment severity. Results: Adolescents with SB reported lower self-perceived health (PedsQL median 55, IQR 42–67), than the reference group (median 85, IQR 74–90), p < 0.001, and lower SOC (median 47, IQR 44–50) than the reference group (median 55, IQR 44–61), p < 0.001. Impairment level was inversely associated with both self-perceived health and SOC. Conclusions: The low self-perceived health and SOC among adolescents with SB in Palestine indicate the need for collaboration between policy makers and providers to improve these adolescents’ physical and social environment and to promote the rehabilitation services provided for them.