For a study, researchers sought to identify subgroups of people with a congenital heart defect (CHD) at risk of health-related quality of life (QoL) impairment at age 8 based on their medical and surgical care. About 598 individuals with CHD were split into five groups based on their medical and surgical management: CHD followed-up in an outpatient clinic, total repair before the age of three, complete repair beyond the age of three, palliative repair, or CHD with spontaneous resolution (reference subgroup). At the age of 8 years, self-reported QoL and parent-reported QoL were assessed using the Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory version 4.0 (score range, 0-100). Multivariable regression analysis and Cohen effect size were utilized to compare outcomes across CHD groups.
Self-reported and parent-reported QoL scores for the palliative repair subgroup were lower (β=−2.1 [95% CI, −3.9 to −0.2] and β=−16.0 [95% CI, −22.4 to −9.5], respectively), with a large effect size (δ = −0.9 [95% CI, −1.4 to −0.4] and δ=−1.3 [95% CI, −1.8 to −0.7], respectively). Parent-reported QoL scores for the complete repair after age 3 years subgroup were lower (β=−9.2; 95% CI, −15.0 to −3.5), with a large effect size (δ=−0.9; 95% CI, −1.4 to −0.5). Self-reported QoL scores for the complete repair before age 3 years subgroup were lower (β=−1.3; 95% CI, −1.9 to −0.6), with a small effect size (δ=−0.4; 95% CI, −0.6 to −0.2). At the age of eight years, the QoL of children with CHD who had a hospital intervention was lowered. Therefore, the patient’s age at the time of the previous cardiac intervention may impact QoL after 8 years.