Health-Related Quality of Life is Associated with Hemoglobin Level in Children with Sickle Cell Anemia

Ruth Williams-Hooker, Stacie Olivi, Matthew P Smeltzer and Winfred C Wang

Purpose: Pediatric health quality of life (HQOL) refers to a child’s physical, emotional, and social well being. HQOL is often compromised in persons with sickle cell anemia (SCA). The purpose of this study was to compare HQOL with hemoglobin in children with SCA. Methods: In a pilot study looking at energy expenditure in children with SCA, we measured subjects’ QOL using the PedsQL survey and compared it to their hemoglobin (Hb) levels at baseline. Results: Twenty-five subjects, all with HbSS, completed the instrument. Their mean age (standard deviation) was 11.4 (3.25) years and 52% were male. Their mean Hb level was 8.4 (1.2) g/dL. Higher scores in social functioning (R=0.63, p=0.0001) and school functioning (R=0.40, p=0.05) were significantly associated with higher Hb levels. Conclusions: We conclude that Hb level is related to HQOL and that treatments aimed at improving Hb may help to improve overall HQOL.