In undertaking comprehensive medical care of the child, the pediatrician assumes responsibility not only for the treatment of the physical manifestations of illness but for the handling of the associated social and emotional problems of the child and his family as well. The management of chronic illness, in particular, is rendered more effective by proper understanding, by both the parents and the physician, of the problems faced by the child in his striving toward an adjustment to his condition. In this connection, as part of an interdisciplinary study of comprehensive medical care for handicapped children, we endeavored to identify and describe reactions of children to a number of chronic illnesses. Of specific interest was the child's concept of his illness in respect to etiology, treatment, hospitalization, family response, and the social implications in his peer relationships and school activities.
A previous report describing patterns of anxiety in a group of
LYNN DB, GLASER HH, HARRISON GS. Comprehensive Medical Care for Handicapped ChildrenIII. Concepts of Illness in Children with Rheumatic Fever. Am J Dis Child. 1962;103(2):120–128. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1962.02080020126003
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