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Benefit Finding Scale for Children: Preliminary findings from a childhood cancer population

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Phipps, S.; Long, A. M.; Ogden, J.

OBJECTIVE: To describe the development of a brief measure of benefit finding for children. Data regarding the psychometrics and validity of the instrument were examined in a sample of children with cancer. METHODS: A cross-sectional sample of children with cancer (N = 199, ages 7-18 years) completed the Benefit Finding Scale for Children (BFSC) along with measures of adaptive style, optimism/pessimism, post-traumatic stress symptoms, and health-related quality of life. RESULTS: The BFSC was found to be a unidimensional measure with excellent internal reliability. Benefit finding was not related to age or gender, but differed as a function of race/ethnicity. No differences were found by diagnostic category, but a significant relationship was found with age at diagnosis and time elapsed since diagnosis. Small, but significant positive correlations were found with measures of optimism and self-esteem, and a negative correlation with anxiety. No relation was found between benefit finding and post-traumatic stress symtpoms or other domains of health-related quality of life. CONCLUSION: The BFSC shows promise as a measure of benefit finding in children. The measure could be readily adapted for other populations of children experiencing trauma.

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