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25-11-2021

Perceptions of parents of the impact of autism spectrum disorder on their quality of life and correlates: comparison between mothers and fathers

Tijdschrift:
Quality of Life Research
Auteurs:
Christelle Vernhet, Cécile Michelon, Florine Dellapiazza, Cécile Rattaz, Marie-Maude Geoffray, Herbert Roeyers, Marie-Christine Picot, Amaria Baghdadli, ELENA study group
Belangrijke opmerkingen
The members of ELENA study group have been listed in acknowledgements.

Publisher's Note

Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.

Abstract

Purpose

To compare mothers and fathers perceptions of the impact of autism spectrum disorder on their Quality of Life (QoL), we used the Parental-Developmental Disorders-Quality of Life scale (Par-DD-QoL).

Method

The perception of QoL of mothers and fathers was compared for 130 pairs of parents of children with ASD and the associated variables were investigated.

Results

Mothers perceived a significantly greater impact of ASD on their QoL than fathers. Parents perceived a higher impact of ASD on global QoL when their child’s adaptive skills were low and when the level of aberrant behaviors was high. More precisely, the perception of QoL by the mothers was negatively associated with their child’s internalized disorders, whereas the perception of QoL by the fathers was negatively associated with their child’s externalized disorders. Neither the mothers’ nor the fathers’ perception of the impact on QoL was associated with their children’s age or the severity of their autistic symptoms. Some parental factors, such as being members of a family association, having benefited from training in ASD and having experienced a disruption in professional activity were associated with a greater impact on their QoL.

Conclusion

Our finding that the perceived impact of ASD on QoL differed between mothers and fathers argues for individualized psychosocial support. Moreover, the strong correlation between the child’s clinical characteristics and the perception by parents of a higher impact of ASD on QoL should be seen as red flag concerning the needs of the parents in terms of social and educational support.
Trial registration number: NCT02625116 (October 2015).

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