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Dignity therapy (DT) is well established in adult populations, and it is likely that it could benefit younger people. This study aimed to adapt the adult Portuguese DT question framework for adolescents (DT-QF-Adol) (ages 10–18).
Five stages were followed: (1) the Portuguese DT-QF for adults was adapted for adolescents with the original author's collaboration, (2) an expert committee provided feedback on the adapted version, (3) an initial consensus version of the DT-QF-Adol was created, (4) expert committee consult affirmed final consensus, and (5) validation stage with a sample of 17 adolescents followed in ambulatory psychology clinic.
DT's original author endorsed the final Portuguese DT-QF-Adol, reinforcing that it captures the fundamental dimensions of DT. There was 100% agreement on the final consensus version and defined age group (10–18 years old). Twenty adolescents were invited to participate, and 17 were included after informed consent was obtained; 53% were female. The average age was 12.7 years. The interviewed adolescents reported that the DT-QF-Adol was clear, and they did not identify any ambiguity or difficulty in answering any of the questions. They assumed that this information could positively affect the way parents and friends see and cared for them, permitting others to understand their concerns and preferences. Participants felt that the DT-QF-Adol could be a good starting point for a conversation with their loved ones. Although they did not consider vital for health professionals to access their answers, they strongly felt that the DT-QF-Adol might be essential to sick adolescents and they would recommend it to others.
Significance of results
We developed a DT-QF of nine questions for Portuguese adolescents (DT-QF-Adol), coined Protocolo de Perguntas da Terapia da Dignidade para Adolescentes — 10–18 anos. This tool can potentially be considered a good addition for pediatric palliative care.
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