“I Can’t Take off My Shirt or Do My Own Hair”—A Qualitative Investigation of the Symptoms and Impact Experience of Children and Adolescents with Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressiva (FOP)

Jessica T. Markowitz, Diana Rofail, Gerrit Vandenberg, Jessica Baldasaro, Robert J. Sanchez, Robert J. Pignolo, Richard Keen, Michelle Davis, Patrick Marquis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Introduction: Fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP) is an ultra-rare, severely disabling, autosomal dominant, congenital disease characterized by progressive multi-focal heterotopic ossification (HO) of skeletal muscle, ligaments, tendons, and fascia. Past FOP studies have focused on the clinical aspects of the disease; therefore, there is a paucity of qualitative research on the patient experience. Our objective was to better understand the experience of children and adolescents living with FOP from their and their parents’ perspectives. Methods: We conducted a qualitative research study comprising in-depth, open-ended interviews with children and adolescents with FOP and their parents. Semi-structured interviews were conducted via phone call or Microsoft Teams with parent-child dyads (n = 11), adolescents (n = 6), and two clinicians. Children/adolescents and their parents were asked open-ended questions to elicit their daily experience of FOP. Results: Concepts were organized into two major themes: symptoms of FOP and the impact of FOP on daily life. Symptoms of FOP reported by children/adolescents, parents, and clinicians were pain, swelling, redness, and stiffness. Functional impacts of flares and FOP in general included accommodations, mobility, activities of daily living, daily activities, and social activities. Impacts were attributed to the difficulties children and adolescents faced living with a disease that prohibited common activities. Conclusions: This research documented the experience of children and adolescents with FOP and its effects on their daily lives. It provides a conceptual model for further exploration of the symptoms and impacts important to children and adolescents with FOP and their parents. Children and adolescents and their parents offered novel insights into life with the disease that have not previously been discussed in published literature. Future studies should build upon our conceptual model to create a holistic view of the patient experience of FOP, to inform clinical practice, and the assessment of the patient experience in clinical trials for the disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAdvances in Therapy
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2022

Keywords

  • Children and adolescents
  • Fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva
  • Patient-reported experience
  • Qualitative research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)

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