Evaluating chronic pain impact among patients in primary care: further validation of a brief assessment instrument

Paul Karoly, Linda S Ruehlman, Leona S Aiken, Michael Todd, Craig Newton
Pain Medicine 2006, 7 (4): 289-98

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the psychometric properties of the Profile of Chronic Pain: Screen (PCP:S) in primary care. The PCP:S is a brief assessment device designed to gauge pain severity, interference, and emotional burden.

DESIGN: Questionnaire survey with short-term reliability and validity follow-up.

METHODS: Two hundred and forty-four outpatients (52% female) with chronic pain recruited from five primary care settings completed the 15-item PCP:S at an initial testing session. Approximately 1 week later, two subgroups participated in a retest reliability and validity follow-up. The battery of follow-up questionnaires included a measure of social desirability response bias and several instruments designed to provide convergent validity for the PCP:S.

RESULTS: Retest reliability, internal consistency, factor structure, and social desirability bias were all found to be acceptable. Likewise, preliminary evidence suggests that, by virtue of its correlation with established measures of pain adjustment, the PCP:S is a valid pain assessment device.

CONCLUSIONS: Although the PCP:S was initially developed and validated using a national community sample of adults with chronic pain who provided data via telephone interviews, the present findings support its use as a brief and psychometrically sound paper-and-pencil measure for the assessment of three key components of chronic pain in primary care.

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