The use of Visual Analog Scale in urogynecologic research: A psychometric evaluation

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Abstract

Objective

The purpose of this study was to assess the validity of Visual Analog Scales in urogynecologic research.

Study design

In phase I, 35 women completed short forms of the urogenital distress inventory, incontinence impact questionnaire, and Beck depression inventory fast screen using the Likert-type scale and Visual Analog Scale formats. Reliability was estimated with Spearman's correlations and Cronbach's alpha; construct validity was assessed with the use of factor analyses. In phase II, 101 women were recruited for the test-retest reliability assessment of the Visual Analog Scale formats of the urogenital distress inventory and incontinence impact questionnaire short forms. Reproducibility was analyzed with intraclass correlations.

Results

In phase I, correlations between the Likert-type scale and the Visual Analog Scale were good: urogenital distress inventory (0.748), incontinence impact questionnaire (0.787), and Beck depression inventory fast screen (0.852; P < .05). In phase II, intraclass correlations were 0.898 and 0.938 for the urogenital distress inventory and incontinence impact questionnaire scores, respectively (P < .001).

Conclusion

The Visual Analog Scale is a simple, reliable, and reproducible method for the assessment of quality of life in urogynecologic research.

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