Asthma control questionnaire in children validation, measurement properties, interpretation

E.F. Juniper, K. Gruffydd-Jones, S. Ward, K. Svensson


The Asthma Control Questionnaire (ACQ) has been validated in adults to measure the primary goal of management (minimisation of symptoms, activity limitations, short-acting β2-agonist use and airway narrowing).

This study evaluated the validity, measurement properties and interpretability of the ACQ in children 6–16 yrs.

35 children attended clinic on 3 occasions (0,1& 4 wks) and completed the ACQ, Mini Paediatric Asthma Quality of Life Questionnaire and Royal College of Physicians Questionnaire. Parents completed the Paediatric Asthma Caregivers Quality of Life Questionnaire. Between visits children completed the Asthma Control Diary and measured PEF. At weeks 1& 4, clinicians and parents completed global rating of change questionnaires.

All patients completed the study. 19 children were stable between two assessments and provided evidence of good test-retest reliability (Intraclass Correlation Coefficient=0.79). The ACQ was responsive to change in asthma control (p=0.026) and the Minimal Important Difference was 0.52±0.45. Both cross-sectional and longitudinal correlations between the ACQ and the other outcomes were close to predicted and provided evidence that the ACQ measures asthma control in children.

The ACQ has strong measurement properties and is valid for use in children 6–16 yrs. In children 6–10 yrs, it must be administered by a trained interviewer.