Leer- en gedragsproblemen en kwaliteit van leven van kinderen na bacteriële meningitis: Waakzaamheid geboden

Translated title of the contribution: Learning and behavioral problems and quality of life of children after bacterial meningitis: Vigilance is needed

Irene Koomen, Hein Raat, Aag Jennekens-Schinkel, Diederick E. Grobbee, John J. Roord, A. Marceline Van Furth*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Background: Learning and behavioural problems are frequently reported in recent studies on long-term adverse outcome of childhood bacterial meningitis. Objective: To investigate school achievement, behaviour, and health-related quality of life of postmeningitic children in The Netherlands. Methods: 182 children (mean age 10 years; range 5-14) were selected from a cohort of 674 postmeningitic children on average 7 (range 4-10) years after meningitis. These children had neither meningitis with 'complex onset', nor prior cognitive or behavioural problems, nor severe disease sequelae. The children were evaluated with an 'Academic Achievement Test' and the parents filled in the Child Behaviour Checklist. Furthermore, parents completed two questionnaires on health-related quality of life (Child Health Questionnaire and Health Utility Index) and the children filled in the Perceived Competence Scale for Children. Results: The cumulative incidence of academic and/or behavioural problems was 32%. Parents' perception of health-related quality of life of the postmeningitic children, particularly in the dimensions of physical and psychosocial functioning, was decreased in comparison to that of a normal reference group. Decreased quality of life with respect to the psychosocial functioning was attributable to the sub-group of postmeningitic children with academic and/or behavioural problems. The self-perceptions of the postmeningitic children did not reveal significant problems. Conclusion: One-third of the postmeningitic children has long-term academic and/or behavioural problems. The health-related quality of life of postmeningitic children is decreased, particularly of those with academic and/or behavioural problems. It is important to bear in mind these risks when taking care of children who survived bacterial meningitis.

Original languageDutch
Pages (from-to)109-118
Number of pages10
JournalTijdschrift voor Kindergeneeskunde
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2003

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