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Rapid Evidence Review: Measures for Patients with Chronic Musculoskeletal Pain

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Rapid Evidence Review: Measures for Patients with Chronic Musculoskeletal Pain

Principal Investigator: Elizabeth S. Goldsmith, MD
Co-Investigators: Maureen Murdoch, MD, MPH; Brent Taylor, PhD
Research Associates: Nancy Greer, PhD; Roderick MacDonald, MS; Lauren G. McKenzie, MPH; Christina Rosebush, MPH

Evidence-based Synthesis Program (ESP) Center, Minneapolis VA Health Care System, Minneapolis, MN

Washington (DC): Department of Veterans Affairs; August 2017.

Download PDF: Complete Report, Supplemental Materials


Developing successful interventions for chronic musculoskeletal pain requires valid, responsive, and reliable outcome measures. By request of the 2016 State of the Art Conference on non-pharmacological approaches to chronic musculoskeletal pain, the Minneapolis VA Evidence-based Synthesis Program completed a rapid evidence review. We addressed a key question regarding psychometric properties of selected self-report pain measures to assist in adoption of these measures as core outcomes in clinical trials and other research of nonpharmacological approaches to chronic musculoskeletal pain.

Key Question

What specific self-report measures of pain (intensity, severity) and pain-related functional impairment (activity limitations, participation, physical functioning, social role functioning, pain impact, pain interference, pain-related disability) have sufficient information on psychometric properties (eg, minimally important differences, validity, responsiveness, reliability) to consider their adoption for use as core outcome measures in prospective observational research and clinical trials of nonpharmacological approaches to care for persons (including Veterans) with chronic (= 3 months) musculoskeletal pain (eg, low back pain, osteoarthritis, and non-traumatic joint pain)?

See also

Rapid Evidence Review: Measures for Patients with Chronic Musculoskeletal Pain (Management eBrief)

Goldsmith ES, Taylor BC, Greer N, et al. Focused Evidence Review: Psychometric Properties of Patient-reported Outcome Measures for Chronic Musculoskeletal Pain. Journal of General Internal Medicine. Published online on April 12, 2018.

Measures for Patients with Chronic Musculoskeletal Pain: A rapid evidence review (Cyberseminar)

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