Short form health surveys and related variants in spinal cord injury research : a systematic review

Whitehurst, David GT, Engel, Lidia and Bryan, Stirling 2014, Short form health surveys and related variants in spinal cord injury research : a systematic review, Journal of spinal cord medicine, vol. 37, no. 2, pp. 128-138, doi: 10.1179/2045772313Y.0000000159.

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Title Short form health surveys and related variants in spinal cord injury research : a systematic review
Author(s) Whitehurst, David GT
Engel, LidiaORCID iD for Engel, Lidia
Bryan, Stirling
Journal name Journal of spinal cord medicine
Volume number 37
Issue number 2
Start page 128
End page 138
Total pages 11
Publisher Taylor & Francis
Place of publication Abingdon, Eng.
Publication date 2014
ISSN 2045-7723
Keyword(s) Health services research
Health surveys
Quality of life
Spinal cord injuries
Summary CONTEXT: 'Short Form' health surveys - such as the SF-36 and SF-12 - are widely used in medical research. Spinal cord injury (SCI) is no exception, despite oft-cited concerns regarding measurement properties for populations with physical impairment.OBJECTIVE: To provide a comprehensive overview of the use of Short Form health surveys and their variants within the SCI literature.METHODS: Papers published between database inception and September 2012 were identified from 11 electronic databases; a supplementary reference list search was also conducted. Data extraction focused on details regarding the range of different Short Form surveys and variants used in SCI research, the respective frequency of use, the nature of reporting (complete versus partial reporting) and the method of survey administration.RESULTS: One hundred seventy-four papers were identified. Thirty-six-item Short Form health surveys were frequently administered as complete instruments (n = 82); in 69 of these 82 studies (84%), it was not clearly stated which 36-item version had been used (e.g. SF-36v1, SF-36v2, RAND-36). Data for individual items and domains were often reported (29% of identified studies), indicating significant partial use of standardized measures. Modified variants of standardized health surveys were administered in 12 studies.CONCLUSION: Although standardized Short Form health surveys are common within SCI research, attempts to add, delete, or modify items have resulted in a number of variants, often with minimal supportive psychometric evidence. Using established, generic outcome measures is appealing for a number of reasons. However, validity is paramount and requires further explicit consideration within the SCI research community.
Language eng
DOI 10.1179/2045772313Y.0000000159
Field of Research 119999 Medical and Health Sciences not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 929999 Health not elsewhere classified
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2014, The Academy of Spinal Cord Injury Professionals
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Health and Social Development
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