Family strain and its relation to psychosocial dysfunction in children and adolescents after liver transplantation.


Parental functioning is essential to children’s development. Therefore, this cross-sectional single-center study examined the prevalence of family strain in 181 parents and its associations to psychosocial functioning in their children after LT. Median age at LT was one yr. Mean time elapsed since LT was 5.8 yr. The IFS, and the SDQ were applied to parents. Family strain in the present sample was comparable to that in the German normative group of families with a chronically ill or disabled child, but families of LT recipients showed a significantly higher financial impact, impact on coping, and impact on siblings (p < 0.001). Younger age of patients at survey, a more severe clinical course, child's restrictions, and financial losses following LT were determined as significant predictors of family strain (R(2) = 0.42). Parents reported less family strain after living-related compared with deceased donation. Family strain was significantly correlated to psychosocial dysfunction in children post-LT. Present findings demonstrate a risk of maladjustment to the post-LT condition in families. They emphasize the importance of psychological assessment of parents and patients during transplant and follow-up to ensure the best achievable long-term outcome of patients.