Health Related Quality of Life and Neurocognitive Outcomes in the First Year after Pediatric Acute Liver Failure

Pediatric Acute Liver Failure Study Group

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13 Scopus citations


Objective: To determine health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and neurocognitive impairment in survivors of pediatric acute liver failure (PALF). Study design: A longitudinal prospective study was conducted. At 6 and 12 months after PALF presentation, surveys of HRQoL were completed for 2- to 19-year-olds and executive functioning for ages 2-16 years. At 12 months, patients 3-16 years of age completed neurocognitive testing. HRQoL scores were compared with a healthy, matched sample. Neurocognitive scores were compared with norms; executive functioning scores were examined categorically. Results: A total of 52 parent-report HRQoL surveys were completed at 6 months, 48 at 12 months; 25 patients completed neurocognitive testing. The median age at 6 months was 7.9 years (range 3.5-15.0), and final diagnosis was indeterminate for 46.2% (n = 24). Self and parent-report on Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory Generic and Multidimensional Fatigue scales fell below the healthy sample at 6 months and 12 months (almost all P <.001). Children reported lower mean scores on cognitive fatigue at 12 months (60.91 ± 22.99) compared with 6 months (73.61 ± 27.49, P =.006). The distribution of Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function scores was shifted downward on parent-report (preschool) for all indices at 6 months (n = 14, P ≤.003); Global Executive Composite and Emergent Metacognition at 12 months (n = 10, P =.03). Visual Motor Integration (VMI-6) Copying (mean = 90.3 ± 13.8, P =.0002) and VMI-6 Motor Coordination (mean = 85.1 ± 15.2 P =.0002) fell below norms, but full scale IQ (Wechsler Scales) and Attention (Conners’ Continuous Performance Test) did not. Conclusions: Survivors of PALF appear to show deficits in motor skills, executive functioning, HRQoL, and evidence for worsening cognitive fatigue from 6 to 12 months following PALF presentation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)129-138.e3
JournalJournal of Pediatrics
StatePublished - May 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • cognition disorders
  • cognitive fatigue
  • executive functioning
  • pediatric liver disease
  • pediatric liver transplantation


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