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Open Access Short Report

Psychometric properties of questionnaires evaluating health-related quality of life and functional status in polytrauma patients with lower extremity injury

Lian Jansen12, Martijn PM Steultjens23*, Herman R Holtslag4, Gert Kwakkel2 and Joost Dekker2

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Allied Health Care, St Antonius Hospital, Nieuwegein, The Netherlands

2 Department of Rehabilitation Medicine and EMGO Institute, VU University Medical Centre, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

3 Institute of Health and Wellbeing, Caledonian University, Glasgow, UK

4 University Medical Centre Utrecht, The Netherlands

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Journal of Trauma Management & Outcomes 2010, 4:7  doi:10.1186/1752-2897-4-7

Published: 28 June 2010

Abstract

Background

Long term disability is common among polytrauma patients. However, as yet little information exists on how to adequately measure functional status and health-related quality of life following polytrauma.

Aims

To establish the unidimensionality, internal consistency and validity of two health-related quality of life measures and one functional status questionnaire among polytrauma patients.

Methods

186 Patients with severe polytrauma including lower extremity injury completed the Sickness Impact Profile-136 (SIP-136), the Medical Outcomes Study 36-Item Short Health Survey (SF-36) and the Groningen Activity Restriction Scale (GARS) 15 months after injury. Unidimensionality and internal consistency was assessed by principal components analysis and Cronbach's alpha (α). To test the construct validity of the questionnaires, predetermined hypotheses were tested.

Results

The unidimensionality and internal consistency of the GARS and the SF-36, but not the SIP-136 were supported. The construct validity of the SF-36, GARS and to a lesser extent the SIP-136 was confirmed.

Conclusion

The SF-36 and the GARS appear to be preferable for use in polytrauma patients over the SIP-136.