Background: There is currently no agreed minimum dataset to inform specialist chronic pain service provision. We aimed to develop a Core Minimum Dataset (CMD) for pain services in Scotland and perform preliminary analysis to evaluate its psychometric properties in adults with chronic pain.
Methods: The questionnaire was developed following a review of existing relevant data collection instruments and national consultation. The CMD questionnaire was completed alongside a routine pre-clinic questionnaire by patients attending two pain services over 3 months. Concurrent validity was tested by comparing scores between the CMD and pre-existing questionnaires. Reliability was assessed by test-retest and discriminative validity via receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves.
Results: The final CMD questionnaire consisted of five questions on four domains: pain severity (Chronic Pain Grade [CPG] Q1); pain interference (CPG Q5); emotional impact (Patient Health Questionnaire-2 [PHQ-2], two questions); and quality of life (Short Form Health Survey-36 [SF-36] Q1). 530 patients completed the questionnaire. Strong correlation was found with the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (r s = 0.753, p < 0.001). Moderate correlations were found with the Brief Pain Inventory for pain interference (r s = 0.585, p < 0.001) and pain severity (r s = 0.644, p < 0.001). Moderate to good reliability was demonstrated (Intra-class Correlation Coefficient = 0.572–0.845). All items indicated good discrimination for relevant health states.
Conclusions: The findings represent initial steps towards developing an accurate questionnaire that is feasible for assessing chronic pain in adults attending specialist pain clinics and measuring service improvements in Scotland. Further validation testing, in clinical settings, is now required.
- chronic pain
- core outcome domains
- pain services
- quality assessment