Shared decision-making in older children and parents considering elective adenotonsillectomy

Amanda I MacDonald, Jill Chorney, Michael Bezuhly, Paul Hong
Clinical Otolaryngology 2020, 45 (1): 32-39

OBJECTIVES: Shared decision-making describes a collaborative process in which healthcare providers and patients/families make treatment decisions using the best available evidence, while taking into account the patient's values and preferences. The objectives of this study were to assess the level of decisional conflict and shared decision-making experienced by older children and their parents when considering elective adentonsillectomies.

DESIGN: A prospective cohort study.

SETTING: Paediatric otolaryngology clinic in a teaching hospital.

PARTICIPANTS: Participants included 53 children older than 9 years and their parents who underwent consultation for tonsillectomy with or without adenoidectomy.

MAIN OUTCOMES MEASURES: Children and parents completed the Decisional Conflict Scale (DCS) and Shared Decision-Making Questionnaire-Patient Version (SDM-Q-9). Surgeons completed the Shared Decision-Making Questionnaire-Physician Version (SDM-Q-Doc).

RESULTS: Overall, 10 (19%) parents and 18 (34%) children reported clinically significant decisional conflict. Parents who opted not to proceed with surgery had significantly higher DCS scores than those who decided to proceed with surgery. Both parents and children SDM-Q-9 and total DCS scores were significantly negatively correlated. Physician SDM-Q-Doc and parent total DCS scores were negatively correlated, while parent and physician SDM scores were positively correlated.

CONCLUSIONS: Many older children and parents reported significant decisional conflict when considering elective paediatric otolaryngology surgery. Decisional conflict levels for both children and parents decreased with greater perceived levels of shared decision-making. Older children did not appear to discern the same levels of shared decision-making as parents and surgeons. Future research should assess methods to implement shared decision-making into clinical practice for clinicians, parents and children when appropriate.


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