Chronic illness in adolescents

Michael G Sawyer, Jennifer J Couper, A James Martin and J Declan Kennedy
Med J Aust 2003; 179 (5): . || doi: 10.5694/j.1326-5377.2003.tb05525.x
Published online: 1 September 2003

Thirty years ago, Pless and Pinkerton1 highlighted the fact that, although children and adolescents experience a diverse range of illnesses, those with chronic conditions have great similarities in their life experiences and in the preventive and rehabilitative aspects of their lives. Since then, the intensity of treatment programs recommended for managing adolescent chronic illnesses has increased greatly. As a result, the daily lives of adolescents with chronic illness are often very different from those of their healthy peers.

  • 1 Women's and Children's Hospital, North Adelaide, SA.
  • 2 Department of Paediatrics, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, SA.


  • 1. Pless IB, Pinkerton P. Chronic childhood disorder — promoting patterns of adjustment. London: Henry Kimpton Publishers, 1975.
  • 2. Hvidore Study Group. Good metabolic control is associated with better quality of life in 2,101 adolescents with type 1 diabetes. Diabetes Care 2001; 24: 1923-1927.
  • 3. Sawyer MG, Reynolds, KE, Couper JJ, et al. Quality of life of children with chronic illness — a prospective study. Qual Life Res 2003. In press.
  • 4. Stark LJ, Jelalian E, Miller DL. Cystic fibrosis. In: Roberts MC, editor. Handbook of pediatric psychology. 2nd ed. New York: Guilford Press, 1995: 241-262.
  • 5. Mrazek A. Psychiatric aspects of somatic disease and disorders. In: Rutter M, Taylor E, editors. Child and adolescent psychiatry. 4th ed. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing, 2002: 810-827.


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