To link pediatric health-related quality of life (HRQOL) and health conditions by establishing clinically meaningful cutoff scores for a HRQOL instrument, the PedsQL.
We conducted telephone interviews with 1745 parents whose children were between 2–18 years old and enrolled in the Florida KidCare program and Children’s Medical Services Network in 2006. Two anchors, the Children with Special Health Care Needs (CSHCN) Screener and the Clinical Risk Groups (CRGs), were used to identify children with special health care needs or chronic conditions. We established cutoff scores for the PedsQL’s physical, emotional, social, school, and total functioning using the areas under the curves (AUCs) to determine the discriminative property of the PedsQL referring to the anchors.
The discriminative property of the PedsQL was superior, especially in total functioning (AUC > 0.7), between children with special health care needs (based on the CSHCN Screener) and with moderate and major chronic conditions (based on the CRGs) as compared to healthy children. For children < 8 years, the recommended cutoff scores for using total functioning to identify CSHCN were 83, 79 for moderate and 77 for major chronic conditions. For children ≥ 8 years, the cutoff scores were 78, 76 and 70, respectively.
Pediatric HRQOL varied with health conditions. Establishing cutoff scores for the PedsQL’s total functioning is a valid and convenient means to potentially identify children with special health care needs or chronic conditions. The cutoff sores can help clinicians to conduct further in-depth clinical assessments.
Children; clinically meaningful difference; cutoff; health-related quality of life; PedsQL
Pain behaviors that are maintained beyond the acute stage post-injury can contribute to subsequent psychosocial and physical disability. Critical to the study of pain behaviors is the availability of psychometrically sound pain behavior measures. In this study we developed a self-report measure of pain behaviors, the Pain Behaviors Self Report (PaB-SR). PaB-SR scores were developed using item response theory and evaluated using a rigorous, multiple-witness approach to validity testing. Participants included: a) 661 survey participants with chronic pain and with multiple sclerosis (MS), back pain, or arthritis; b) 618 survey participants who were significant others of a chronic pain participant; and c) 86 participants in a videotaped pain behavior observation protocol. Scores on the PaB-SR were found to be measurement invariant with respect to clinical condition. PaB-SR scores, observer-reports, and the video-taped protocol yielded distinct, but convergent views of pain behavior, supporting the validity of the new measure. The PaB-SR is expected to be of substantial utility to researchers wishing to explore the relationship between pain behaviors and constructs such as pain intensity, pain interference, and disability.
Chronic pain; assessment; psychometrics
The purpose of this study was to develop item banks by linking items from three pediatric health-related quality of life (HRQoL) instruments using a mixed methodology. Secondary data were collected from 469 parents of children aged 8-16 years. The International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health-Children and Youth (ICF-CY) served as a framework to compare the concepts of items from three HRQoL instruments. The structural validity of the individual domains was examined using confirmatory factor analyses. Samejima's Graded Response Model was used to calibrate items from different instruments. The known-groups validity of each domain was examined using the status of children with special health care needs (CSHCN). Concepts represented by the items in the three instruments were linked to 24 different second-level categories of the ICF-CY. Eight item banks representing eight unidimensional domains were created based on the linkage of the concepts measured by the items of the three instruments to the ICF-CY. The HRQoL results of CSHCN in seven out of eight domains (except personality) were significantly lower compared with children without special health care needs (p<0.05). This study demonstrates a useful approach to compare the item concepts from the three instruments and to generate item banks for a pediatric population.
We aimed to examine the relationships between asthma control, daytime sleepiness, and asthma-specific health-related quality of life (HRQOL) among children with asthma. Path analyses were conducted to test if daytime sleepiness can mediate the effect of asthma control status on asthma-specific HRQOL.
160 dyads of asthmatic children and their parents were collected for analyses. The Asthma Control and Communication Instrument (ACCI) was used to categorize adequate and poor asthma control status. The Cleveland Adolescent Sleepiness Questionnaire (CASQ) was used to measure children’s daytime sleepiness, including sleep in school, awake in school, sleep in evening, and sleep during transport. The Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS) Asthma Impact Scale was used to measure asthma-specific HRQOL.
Poorly controlled asthma was associated with daytime sleepiness and impaired asthma-specific HRQOL. Asthma control status was directly associated with asthma-specific HRQOL (P<.05), whereas sleep in school and sleep in evening domains of daytime sleepiness significantly mediated the relationship between poor asthma control and impaired HRQOL (P<.01).
Asthma control status was associated with pediatric asthma-specific HRQOL, and the association was significantly mediated by daytime sleepiness. Healthcare providers need to address pediatric sleep needs related to poor asthma control to reduce the impact on HRQOL.
Asthma control; children; health-related quality of life; patient-reported outcomes; sleepiness; structural equation modeling
Health-related quality of life (HRQoL) is a multidimensional concept that includes subjective reports of symptoms, side effects, functioning in multiple life domains, and general perceptions of life satisfaction and quality. Rather than estimating it from external observations, interview, or clinical assessment, it is best measured by direct query. Due to a perception that respondents may not be reliable or credible, there has been some reluctance to use self-report outcomes in psychiatry. More recently, and increasingly, HRQoL assessment through direct patient query has become common when evaluating a range of psychiatric, psychological, and social therapies. With few exceptions, psychiatric patients are credible and reliable reporters of this information. This article summarizes studies that highlight the development, validation, and application of HRQoL measures in psychiatry. Thoughtful application of these tools in psychiatric research can provide a much-needed patient perspective in the future of comparative effectiveness research, patient-centered outcomes research, and clinical care.
health-related quality of life; quality of life; psychiatric outcome; psychiatric symptom; patient-reported outcome
This study examined the measurement invariance of responses to the patient-reported outcomes measurement information system (PROMIS) pain interference (PI) item bank. The original PROMIS calibration sample (Wave I) was augmented with a sample of persons recruited from the American Chronic Pain Association (ACPA) to increase the number of participants reporting higher levels of pain. Establishing measurement invariance of an item bank is essential for the valid interpretation of group differences in the latent concept being measured.
Multi-group confirmatory factor analysis (MG-CFA) was used to evaluate successive levels of measurement invariance: configural, metric, and scalar invariance.
Support was found for configural and metric invariance of the PROMIS-PI, but not for scalar invariance.
Conclusions and recommendations
Based on our results of MG-CFA, we recommend retaining the original parameter estimates obtained by combining the community sample of Wave I and ACPA participants. Future studies should extend this study by examining measurement equivalence in an item response theory framework such as differential item functioning analysis.
Factor analysis; Pain interference; Pain measurement; Patient outcome measures; Psychometrics
Patient-reported outcomes (PROs) play an increasingly important role in clinical practice and research. Modern psychometric methods such as item response theory (IRT) enable the creation of item banks that support fixed-length forms as well as computerized adaptive testing (CAT), often resulting in improved measurement precision and responsiveness. Here we describe and discuss the case for developing an international core set of PROs building from the US PROMIS® network.
PROMIS is a U.S.-based cooperative group of research sites and centers of excellence convened to develop and standardize PRO measures across studies and settings. If extended to a global collaboration, PROMIS has the potential to transform PRO measurement by creating a shared, unifying terminology and metric for reporting of common symptoms and functional life domains. Extending a common set of standardized PRO measures to the international community offers great potential for improving patient-centered research, clinical trials reporting, population monitoring, and health care worldwide. Benefits of such standardization include the possibility of: international syntheses (such as meta-analyses) of research findings; international population monitoring and policy development; health services administrators and planners access to relevant information on the populations they serve; better assessment and monitoring of patients by providers; and improved shared decision making.
The goal of the current PROMIS International initiative is to ensure that item banks are translated and culturally adapted for use in adults and children in as many countries as possible. The process includes 3 key steps: translation/cultural adaptation, calibration, and validation. A universal translation, an approach focusing on commonalities, rather than differences across versions developed in regions or countries speaking the same language, is proposed to ensure conceptual equivalence for all items. International item calibration using nationally representative samples of adults and children within countries is essential to demonstrate that all items possess expected strong measurement properties. Finally, it is important to demonstrate that the PROMIS measures are valid, reliable and responsive to change when used in an international context.
IRT item banking will allow for tailoring within countries and facilitate growth and evolution of PROs through contributions from the international measurement community. A number of opportunities and challenges of international development of PROs item banks are discussed.
Patient-reported outcomes; Health-related quality of life research; Patients’ experiences; Questionnaires; Cross-cultural equivalence; Health information systems; Clinical decision making; Comparative effectiveness research; Patient empowerment; Cross-national comparisons
Despite the increasing use of panel surveys, little is known about the differences in data quality across panels.
The aim of this study was to characterize panel survey companies and their respondents based on (1) the timeliness of response by panelists, (2) the reliability of the demographic information they self-report, and (3) the generalizability of the characteristics of panelists to the US general population. A secondary objective was to highlight several issues to consider when selecting a panel vendor.
We recruited a sample of US adults from 7 panel vendors using identical quotas and online surveys. All vendors met prespecified inclusion criteria. Panels were compared on the basis of how long the respondents took to complete the survey from time of initial invitation. To validate respondent identity, this study examined the proportion of consented respondents who failed to meet the technical criteria, failed to complete the screener questions, and provided discordant responses. Finally, characteristics of the respondents were compared to US census data and to the characteristics of other panels.
Across the 7 panel vendors, 2% to 9% of panelists responded within 2 days of invitation; however, approximately 20% of the respondents failed the screener, largely because of the discordance between self-reported birth date and the birth date in panel entry data. Although geographic characteristics largely agreed with US Census estimates, each sample underrepresented adults who did not graduate from high school and/or had annual incomes less than US $15,000. Except for 1 vendor, panel vendor samples overlapped one another by approximately 20% (ie, 1 in 5 respondents participated through 2 or more panel vendors).
The results of this head-to-head comparison provide potential benchmarks in panel quality. The issues to consider when selecting panel vendors include responsiveness, failure to maintain sociodemographic diversity and validated data, and potential overlap between panels.
survey methods; community surveys; sampling bias; selection bias; Internet; data sources
The evaluation of asthma symptoms is a core outcome measure in asthma clinical research. The Asthma Symptom Utility Index (ASUI) was developed to assess frequency and severity of asthma symptoms. The psychometric properties of the ASUI are not well characterized and a minimal important difference (MID) is not established.
We assessed the reliability, validity, and responsiveness to change of the ASUI in a population of adult asthma patients. We also sought to determine the MID for the ASUI.
Adult asthma patients (n = 1648) from two previously completed multicenter randomized trials were included. Demographic information, spirometry, ASUI scores, and other asthma questionnaire scores were obtained at baseline and during follow-up visits. Participants also kept a daily asthma diary.
Internal consistency reliability of the ASUI was 0.74 (Cronbach’s alpha). Test-retest reliability was 0.76 (intra-class correlation). Construct validity was demonstrated by significant correlations between ASUI scores and Asthma Control Questionnaire (ACQ) scores (Spearman correlation r = −0.79, 95% CI [−0.85, −0.75], P<0.001) and Mini Asthma Quality of Life Questionnaire (Mini AQLQ) scores (r = 0.59, 95% CI [0.51, 0.61], P<0.001). Responsiveness to change was demonstrated, with significant differences between mean changes in ASUI score across groups of participants differing by 10% in the percent predicted FEV1 (P<0.001), and by 0.5 points in ACQ score (P < 0.001). Anchor-based methods and statistical methods support an MID for the ASUI of 0.09 points.
The ASUI is reliable, valid, and responsive to changes in asthma control over time. The MID of the ASUI (range of scores 0–1) is 0.09.
Asthma Symptom Utility Index; reliability; validity; responsiveness; minimal important difference
Limited evidence examines agreement between the ratings of adolescents’ health-related quality of life (HRQOL) by parents and adolescents especially accounting for measurement properties. This study aimed to test whether agreement exists between the dyads using a methodology of measurement invariance.
Study Design and Setting
We conducted a telephone survey to collect data from parents and their adolescents enrolled in Florida’s Children’s Medical Services (376 pairs) using the PedsQL 4.0. We used multi-group confirmatory factor analysis to test measurement invariance, including configural (equivalent HRQOL construct), metric (equivalent item–domain associations), scalar (equivalent starting value of ratings), and residual (equivalent nonsystematic measurement errors of ratings) invariance. We also investigated correlates of discrepancies in the dyadic ratings.
There were equivalent HRQOL constructs and item–domain associations between the dyads. However, some items show different starting values and nonsystematic errors in the dyadic ratings. After adjusting for noninvariant items, adolescents reported significant higher HRQOL scores than parents in all domains (P < 0.05). Parents’ rating of adolescents’ health significantly contributed to discrepancies in the dyadic ratings (P < 0.05).
Adolescents rated HRQOL higher than their parents. This discrepancy was associated with severe health conditions. Without assuring measurement invariance, comparisons of the dyadic HRQOL ratings can be misleading.
Adolescent; Confirmatory factor analysis; Health-related quality of life; Health status; Proxy; Measurement invariance
Little attention has been paid to selecting and developing health-related quality of life (HRQOL) measurement tools for young adult survivors of childhood cancer (YASCC). The primary purpose of this study was to develop a HRQOL tool for YASCC based on three legacy instruments.
Data collected from 151 YASCC were analyzed. HRQOL was measured using the Medical Outcomes Study SF-36, Quality of Life in Adult Cancer Survivors, and Quality of Life-Cancer Survivor. We used the following stages to develop our HRQOL tool: mapping items from three instruments into a common HRQOL construct, checking dimensionality using confirmatory factor analyses (CFA), and equating items using Rasch modeling.
We assigned 123 items to a HRQOL construct comprised of six generic and eight survivor-specific domains. CFA retained 107 items that meet the assumptions of unidimensionality and local independence. Rasch analysis retained 68 items that satisfied the indices of information-weighted/outlier-sensitive fit statistic mean square. However, items in most domains possess relatively easy measurement properties, whereas YASCC’s underlying HRQOL was on the middle to higher levels.
Psychometric properties of the established tool for measuring HRQOL of YASCC were not satisfied. Future studies need to refine this tool, especially adding more challenging items.
Childhood cancer; measurement; quality of life; Rasch analysis; young adult survivor
This study determined how the magnitude of change in positive subjective responses predicts clinical outcome in a treatment setting. Specifically, we attempted to define what constitutes a clinically important difference (CID) in subjective responses.
A 100-mm visual analog scale (VAS) measured subjective ratings of drug “high,” calculated via an anchor-based method with published data from participants receiving sustained-release naltrexone (NTX) and heroin in a laboratory setting. The data were then compared to clinical outcomes in a treatment trial with sustained-release naltrexone. A distribution-based method subsequently analyzed data from participants who received ALO-01 (extended-release morphine with sequestered NTX) to predict its abuse liability.
Differences in ratings of drug high of approximately 10 mm on a 100-mm line were clinically significant. By extrapolation, CIDs were also found between crushed or intact ALO-01 and immediate-release morphine sulfate (IRMS). No CIDs were found between intact and crushed ALO-01.
From laboratory and treatment trial data involving naltrexone, calculation of CIDs in subjective ratings of high is possible. Consequently, crushing/swallowing or injecting ALO-01 produces clinically significantly less drug high than oral or intravenous morphine alone, suggesting that ALO-01 has lower abuse liability by those routes than morphine formulations.
Analgesics; Opioid; Drug formulations; Morphine; Drug high; Abuse liability
Little is known about factors contributing to children’s asthma control status and health-related quality of life (HRQoL). The study objectives were to assess the relationship between asthma control and asthma-specific HRQoL in asthmatic children, and to examine the extent to which parental health literacy, perceived self-efficacy with patient-physician interaction, and satisfaction with shared decision-making (SDM) contribute to children’s asthma control and asthma-specific HRQoL.
This cross-sectional study utilized data collected from a sample of asthmatic children (n = 160) aged 8–17 years and their parents (n = 160) who visited a university medical center. Asthma-specific HRQoL was self-reported by children using the National Institutes of Health’s Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS) Pediatric Asthma Impact Scale. Satisfaction with SDM, perceived self-efficacy with patient-physician interaction, parental health literacy, and asthma control were reported by parents using standardized measures. Structural equation modeling (SEM) was performed to test the hypothesized pathways.
Path analysis revealed that children with better asthma control reported higher asthma-specific HRQoL (β = 0.4, P < 0.001). Parents with higher health literacy and greater perceived self-efficacy with patient-physician interactions were associated with higher satisfaction with SDM (β = 0.38, P < 0.05; β = 0.58, P < 0.001, respectively). Greater satisfaction with SDM was in turn associated with better asthma control (β = −0.26, P < 0.01).
Children’s asthma control status influenced their asthma-specific HRQoL. However, parental factors such as perceived self-efficacy with patient-physician interaction and satisfaction with shared decision-making indirectly influenced children’s asthma control status and asthma-specific HRQoL.
Asthma control; Health-related quality of life; PROMIS; Satisfaction with shared decision-making; Perceived self-efficacy with patient-physician interaction; Structural equation modeling
To develop expert consensus on a suite of reporting standards for HRQL outcomes of RCTs.
A Task Force of The International Society of Quality of Life Research (ISOQOL) undertook a systematic review of the literature to identify candidate reporting standards for HRQL in RCTs. Subsequently, a web-based survey was circulated to the ISOQOL membership. Respondents were asked to rate candidate standards on a 4-point Likert scale based on their perceived value in reporting studies in which HRQL was a study outcome (primary or secondary). Results were synthesized into draft reporting guidelines, which were further reviewed by the membership to inform the final guidance.
Forty-six existing candidate standards for reporting HRQL results in RCTs were synthesized to produce a 40 item survey that was completed electronically by 161 respondents. The majority of respondents rated all 40 items to be either ‘essential’ or ‘desirable’ when HRQL was a primary RCT outcome. Ratings changed when HRQL was a secondary study outcome. Feedback on the survey findings resulted in the Task Force generalizing the guidance to include patient-reported outcomes (PROs). The final guidance, which recommends standards for use in reporting PROs generally, and more specifically, for PROs identified as primary study outcomes, was approved by the ISOQOL Board of Directors.
ISOQOL has developed a suite of recommended standards for reporting PRO results of RCTs. Improved reporting of PROs will enable accurate interpretation of evidence to inform patient choice, aid clinical decision making, and inform health policy.
Reporting; Randomized clinical trials; Quality of life; Patient-reported outcomes; Guidelines
The Patient Perception of Intensity of Urgency Scale (PPIUS) is a patient-reported outcome instrument intended to measure the intensity of urgency associated with each urinary or incontinence episode. The objectives of this study were to assess the content validity, test-retest reliability, and acclimation effect of the PPIUS in overactive bladder (OAB) patients.
Patients undergoing treatment for OAB were recruited to participate in a non-interventional study by completing a three-day micturition diary including the PPIUS for three consecutive weeks. Following completion of the three-week study, participants from two select sites also completed a cognitive interview to assess their comprehension of the PPIUS.
Thirty-nine participants successfully completed the three-week test-retest study; twelve of these participants completed the cognitive interview. Test-retest reliability was high based on intra-class correlation coefficient of 0.95. Among stable patients, the difference between the mean ratings of any two weeks was non-significant. Among the twelve interview participants, nine found it simple to choose a PPIUS rating for each of their micturition episodes and most found the urgency rating definitions consistent with their urgency experiences.
The results demonstrated content validity based on qualitative interviews, and excellent test-retest reliability among stable patients. In addition, no acclimation effect was observed among stable patients. These findings support the use of the PPIUS as a reliable measure of urgency in both clinical trial and real life settings. The validity of PPIUS could be further established with future studies investigating the relationship between discretely graded urgency and incontinence continuum.
Over active bladder; OAB; Urinary urgency; Urge incontinence; Patient perception of intensity of urgency scale; PPIUS
Limited studies consider the effect of differential item functioning (DIF) on health-related quality of life (HRQOL) comparisons between ill and health children. The objective is to assess DIF and compare HRQOL between children with special health care needs (CSHCN) and children without needs.
Data were collected from 1195 families of children enrolled in Florida’s public insurance programs. HRQOL was measured using physical, emotional, social, and school functioning of the PedsQL. We identified CSHCN using the CSHCN Screener and assessed DIF related to CSHCN using a multiple group-multiple indicator-multiple cause (MG-MIMIC) method. We assessed the impact of DIF by examining expected item/test scores and item/test information function. We tested the discrepancy between underlying HRQOL scores of both groups before and after DIF calibration (allowing parameters of DIF items to be different and DIF-free items to be the same across both groups).
Two (25%) and 3 items (60%) of physical and school functioning, respectively, were identified with non-uniform DIF, and two items (40%) of social functioning were identified with uniform DIF. Expected item/test scores and item/test information function suggest the impact of DIF is minimal. Before DIF calibration, HRQOL in CSHCN was more impaired than children without needs (effect size −1.04, − 0.74, −0.96, and −0.98 for physical, emotional, social and school functioning, respectively). After DIF calibration, the discrepancy was increased slightly.
Although 30% of items in the PedsQL were identified with DIF related to CSHCN and children without needs, the impact of DIF is minimal.
Children; differential item functioning; health-related quality of life; item response theory
Chronic hepatitis C (CHC) and its treatment are associated with a variety of patient-reported symptoms and impacts. Some CHC symptoms and impacts may be difficult to evaluate through objective clinical testing, and more easily measured through patient self-report. This literature review identified concepts raised by CHC patients related to symptoms, impacts, and treatment effects, and evaluated integration of these concepts within patient-reported outcome (PRO) measures. The goal of this work was to provide recommendations for incorporation of PRO measurement of concepts that are relevant to the CHC experience into CHC clinical trial design.
A three-tiered literature search was conducted. This included searches on concepts of importance, PRO measures used in clinical trials, and existing PRO measures. The PRO Concept Search focused on reviewing issues raised by CHC patients about CHC symptoms, disease impact, and treatment effects. The CHC Trials with PRO Endpoints Search reviewed clinical trials with PRO endpoints to assess differences between treatments over time. The PRO Measure Search reviewed existing PRO measures associated with the concepts of interest.
This multi-tiered approach identified five key concepts of interest: depression/anxiety, fatigue, flu-like symptoms, cognitive function, insomnia. Comparing these five concepts of interest to the PRO measures in published CHC clinical trials showed that, while treatment of CHC may decrease health-related quality of life in a number of mental and physical domains, the PRO measures that were utilized in published clinical trials inadequately covered the concepts of interest. Further review of 18 existing PRO measures of the concepts of interest showed only four of the 18 were validated in CHC populations.
This review identified several gaps in the literature regarding assessment of symptoms and outcomes reported as important by CHC patients. Further research is needed to ensure that CHC clinical trials evaluate concepts that are important to patients and include measures that have evidence supporting content validity, reliability, construct validity, and responsiveness.
Hepatitis C; Patient-reported outcomes; Literature review; Health-related quality of life
The Reasons for Antipsychotic Discontinuation Interview (RAD-I) was developed to assess patients’ perceptions of reasons for discontinuing or continuing an antipsychotic. The current study examined reliability and validity of domain scores representing three factors contributing to these treatment decisions: treatment benefits, adverse events, and distal reasons other than direct effects of the medication.
Data were collected from patients with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder and their treating clinicians. For approximately 25% of patients, a second rater completed the RAD-I for assessment of inter-rater reliability.
All patients (n = 121; 81 discontinuation, 40 continuation) reported at least one reason for discontinuation or continuation (mean = 2.8 reasons for discontinuation; 3.4 for continuation). Inter-rater reliability was supported (kappas = 0.63–1.0). Validity of the discontinuation domain scores was supported by associations with symptom measures (the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale for Schizophrenia, the Clinical Global Impression – Schizophrenia Scale; r = 0.30 to 0.51; all P < 0.01), patients’ primary reasons for discontinuation, and adverse events. However, the continuation domain scores were not significantly associated with these other indicators.
Results support the reliability, convergent validity, and known-groups validity of the RAD-I for assessing patients’ reasons for antipsychotic discontinuation. Further research is needed to examine validity of the RAD-I continuation section.
discontinuation; antipsychotic; schizophrenia; treatment continuation; patientreported outcomes; instrument development
In an international, randomized Phase III trial ipilimumab demonstrated a significant overall survival benefit in previously treated advanced melanoma patients. This report summarizes health-related quality of life (HRQL) outcomes for ipilimumab with/without gp100 vaccine compared to gp100 alone during the clinical trial’s 12 week treatment induction period.
The Phase III clinical trial (MDX010-20) was a double-blind, fixed dose study in 676 previously treated advanced unresectable stage III or IV melanoma patients. Patients were randomized 3:1:1 to receive either ipilimumab (3 mg/kg q3w x 4 doses) + gp100 (peptide vaccine; 1 mg q3w x 4 doses; ipilimumab plus gp100, n = 403); gp100 vaccine + placebo (gp100 alone, n = 136); or ipilimumab + placebo (ipilimumab alone, n = 137). The European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaire (EORTC QLQ-C30) assessed HRQL. Baseline to Week 12 changes in EORTC QLQ-C30 function, global health status, and symptom scores were analyzed for ipilimumab with/without gp100 vaccine compared to gp100 alone. Mean change in scores were categorized “no change” (0–5), “a little” (5–10 points), “moderate” (10–20 points), and “very much” (>20).
In the ipilimumab plus gp100 and ipilimumab alone groups, mean changes from baseline to Week 12 generally indicated “no change” or “a little” impairment across EORTC QLQ-C30 global health status, function, and symptom subscales. Significant differences in constipation, favoring ipilimumab, were observed (p < 0.05). For ipilimumab alone arm, subscales with no or a little impairment were physical, emotional, cognitive, social function, global health, nausea, pain, dyspnea, constipation, and diarrhea subscales. For the gp100 alone group, the observed changes were moderate to large for global health, role function, fatigue, and for pain.
Ipilimumab with/without gp100 vaccine does not have a significant negative HRQL impact during the treatment induction phase relative to gp100 alone in stage III or IV melanoma patients.
Clinicaltrials.gov identification number NCT00094653
Ipilimumab; Randomized clinical trial; EORTC QLQ-C30; Advanced melanoma; Health-related quality of life
The Fatigue Associated with Depression Questionnaire (FAsD) was developed to assess fatigue and its impact among patients with depression. The purpose of this study was to examine the questionnaire’s responsiveness to change and identify a responder definition for interpretation of treatment-related changes.
Data were collected at baseline and at 6 weeks from patients with depression starting treatment with a new antidepressant.
Of the 96 participants, 55.2% were women, with a mean age of 43.4 years. The total score and both subscales demonstrated statistically significant change with moderate to large effect sizes (absolute values ≥0.76). FAsD change scores were significantly correlated with change on the Brief Fatigue Inventory (r ≥ 0.73; p < 0.001). FAsD mean change scores discriminated among patient subgroups differing by degree of improvement in patient- and clinician-reported fatigue and depression. Responder definition for the two subscales and total score (0.67, 0.57, 0.62) was estimated primarily based on mean change among patients who reported a small but important improvement in fatigue.
The FAsD was responsive to change, and the responder definition may be used when interpreting treatment-related change. Results add to previous findings suggesting the FAsD is a useful measure of fatigue among patients with depression.
Fatigue; Depression; Responsiveness; Responder definition; Minimal important difference; Questionnaire
Patient-reported outcomes (PROs) are essential when evaluating many new treatments in health care, yet current measures have been limited by a lack of precision, standardization and comparability of scores across studies and diseases. The Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS™) provides item banks that offer the potential for PRO measurement that is efficient (minimizes item number without compromising reliability) flexible (enables optional use of interchangeable items), and precise (has minimal error in estimate) measurement of commonly-studied PROs. We report results from the first large-scale testing of PROMIS items.
Study Design and Setting
Fourteen item pools were tested in the U.S. general population and clinical groups using an online panel and clinic recruitment. A scale-setting sub-sample was created reflecting demographics proportional to the 2000 U.S. census.
Using item response theory (graded response model), 11 item banks were calibrated on a sample of 21,133, measuring components of self-reported physical, mental and social health, along with a 10-item global health scale. Short forms from each bank were developed and compared to the overall bank as well as with other well-validated and widely accepted (“legacy”) measures. All item banks demonstrated good reliability across the majority of the score distributions. Construct validity was supported by moderate to strong correlations with legacy measures.
PROMIS item banks and their short forms provide evidence they are reliable and precise measures of generic symptoms and functional reports comparable to legacy instruments. Further testing will continue to validate and test PROMIS items and banks in diverse clinical populations.
Outcome Measures; Quality of life; Chronic disease
About 500,000 children are coping with life-threatening conditions (LTC) in the United States every year. Different service programs such as an integrated pediatric palliative care program may benefit health-related quality of life (HRQOL) which is a great concern of this children population and their families. However, evidence is limited about the appropriate HRQOL instruments for use. This study aims to validate psychometric properties of a generic HRQOL instrument, the Pediatric Quality of Life (PedsQL) 4.0, for children with LTC. The parent proxy-report was used. We conducted a telephone interview to collect data of 257 parents whose children had LTC and were enrolled in Medicaid. We used standard psychometric methods to validate the PedsQL: scale reliability, item-domain convergent/discriminant validity, and known-groups validity. We also conducted Rasch analysis to assess construct validity. Results suggest that the PedsQL did not demonstrate valid psychometric properties for measuring HRQOL in this population. Rasch analysis suggests that the contents of the items in all domains did not appropriately cover the latent HRQOL of children with LTC. We document several methodological challenges in using a generic instrument to measuring HRQOL and propose a new framework to improve HRQOL measures for children with LTC. The strategies include revising the content of existing items, designing new items, adding important themes (e.g., financial challenge), and applying computerized adaptive test to better select appropriate items for individual children with LTC.
Quality of life; Life-threatening conditions; Psychometrics
To examine information that parents of children with life-limiting conditions want to discuss with children’s physicians to assist decision-making, and whether the desire for this information is associated with parents’ trust in physicians.
A cross-sectional study using a telephone survey.
Patients and methods
Subjects comprised a random sample of 266 parents whose children were enrolled in Florida’s Medicaid Program. Parents were asked if they wanted to discuss information related to their children’s treatment, including quality of life (QOL), pain relief, spiritual beliefs, clinical diagnosis/laboratory data, changes in the child’s behavior due to treatment, changes in the child’s appearance due to treatment, chances of recovery, and advice from the physician and family/friends. The Wake Forest Physician Trust Scale was used to measure parents’ trust in physicians. We tested the relationships between parents’ age, race/ethnicity, education, parent-reported children’s health status, and the desired information. We also tested whether the desire for information was associated with greater trust in physicians.
Most parents wanted information on their children’s QOL (95%), followed by chance of recovery (88%), and pain relief (84%). Compared with nonHispanic whites, nonHispanic blacks and Hispanics showed a greater desire for information and a chance to discuss QOL information had greater trust in their children’s physicians than other information after adjusting for covariates (P < 0.05).
Among children with life-limiting conditions, QOL is the most frequently desired information that parents would like to receive from physicians as part of shared decision-making. Parents’ desire for QOL information is associated with greater trust in their children’s physicians.
children; information; life-limiting condition; quality of life; shared decision-making
This paper describes the psychometric properties of the PROMIS Pain Interference (PROMIS-PI) bank. An initial candidate item pool (n=644) was developed and evaluated based on review of existing instruments, interviews with patients, and consultation with pain experts. From this pool, a candidate item bank of 56 items was selected and responses to the items were collected from large community and clinical samples. A total of 14,848 participants responded to all or a subset of candidate items. The responses were calibrated using an item response theory (IRT) model. A final 41-item bank was evaluated with respect to IRT assumptions, model fit, differential item function (DIF), precision, and construct and concurrent validity. Items of the revised bank had good fit to the IRT model (CFI and NNFI/TLI ranged from 0.974 to 0.997), and the data were strongly unidimensional (e.g., ratio of first and second eigenvalue = 35). Nine items exhibited statistically significant DIF. However, adjusting for DIF had little practical impact on score estimates and the items were retained without modifying scoring. Scores provided substantial information across levels of pain; for scores in the T-score range 50-80, the reliability was equivalent to 0.96 to 0.99. Patterns of correlations with other health outcomes supported the construct validity of the item bank. The scores discriminated among persons with different numbers of chronic conditions, disabling conditions, levels of self-reported health, and pain intensity (p< 0.0001). The results indicated that the PROMIS-PI items constitute a psychometrically sound bank. Computerized adaptive testing and short forms are available.
Quality-of-life outcomes; quality-of-life measurement; pain
We evaluated the psychometric characteristics of the Short Form 36 (SF-36) Health Survey and the Functional Assessment of Chronic Illness Therapy (FACIT)-Fatigue subscale in patients with ankylosing spondylitis (AS).
We analyzed clinical and patient-reported outcome (PRO) data collected during 12-week, double-blind, placebo-controlled periods of two randomized controlled trials comparing adalimumab and placebo for the treatment of active AS. The Bath Ankylosing Spondylitis Disease Activity Index, Bath Ankylosing Spondylitis Functional Index, and other clinical measures were collected during the clinical trial. We evaluated internal consistency/reliability, construct validity, and responsiveness to change for the SF-36 and FACIT-Fatigue.
The SF-36 (Cronbach alpha, 0.74-0.92) and FACIT-Fatigue (Cronbach alpha, 0.82-0.86) both had good internal consistency/reliability. At baseline, SF-36 and FACIT-Fatigue scores correlated significantly with Ankylosing Spondylitis Quality of Life scores (r = -0.36 to -0.66 and r = -0.70, respectively; all p < 0.0001). SF-36 scores varied by indicators of clinical severity, with greater impairment observed for more severe degrees of clinical activity (all p < 0.0001). FACIT-Fatigue scores correlated significantly with SF-36 scores (r = 0.42 to 0.74; all p < 0.0001) and varied by clinical severity (p < 0.05 to p < 0.0001).
The SF-36 is a reliable, valid, and responsive measure of health-related quality of life and the FACIT-Fatigue is a brief and psychometrically sound measure of the effects of fatigue on patients with AS. These PROs may be useful in evaluating effectiveness of new treatments for AS.
ClinicalTrials.gov: NCT00085644 and NCT00195819
Ankylosing spondylitis; Health-related quality of life; Physical and mental health; Reliability; Validity