Caregiver quality of life after pediatric tracheostomy

Erin M. Wynings, Stephen R. Chorney, Rebecca L. Brooks, Ashley F. Brown, Ashley Sewell, Candice H. Bailey, Cindy Whitney, Yann-Fuu Kou, Romaine F Johnson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To determine the impact of a child with a tracheostomy on caregiver quality of life. Methods: A repeated cross-sectional analysis included families with tracheostomy-dependent children between 2019 and 2021. Caregivers were surveyed using the PedsQL™ Family Impact Module with assessments at tracheostomy placement and during ambulatory office visits. Results: Two-hundred and fifty-five surveys were performed with 66 at tracheostomy placement (26%) and 189 at follow-up visits (74%). Compared to families with healthy children, total scores at placement (77.2 vs. 87.6, P < .001) and follow-up visits (78.9 vs. 87.6, P < .001) were significantly lower among pediatric tracheostomy families. Caregivers were likely to report significant improvement in emotional functioning (6.2 points; 95% CI: 0.5–12, P = .03) and worry (9 points, 95% CI: 2.1–15.9, P = .01) over time. Demographic variables demonstrated no confounding or interactive effects. Conclusions: The presence of a tracheostomy is associated with lower caregiver quality of life scores in the short- and long-term compared to caregivers of healthy children. Providers should be sensitive to these challenges and provide appropriate support for families of tracheostomy-dependent children.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number111416
JournalInternational Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology
StatePublished - Jan 2023


  • Caregiver
  • Pediatric
  • PedsQL™
  • QOL
  • Quality of life
  • Tracheostomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Otorhinolaryngology


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