Development and validation of QoL5 for clinical databases. A short, global and generic questionnaire based on an integrated theory of the quality of life

Eur J Surg. 2002;168(2):107-13. doi: 10.1080/11024150252884331.


Objective: To develop and validate a short, global, and generic quality of life (QoL) questionnaire for clinical databases. The construct validity and item weighting of existing questionnaires are increasingly questioned.

Design: Cross-sectional population study.

Subject: 2460 Danes aged 18-88 years, randomly selected through the Danish Central Person Registry.

Interventions: Ten questions covering the spectrum of the integrative theory of QoL together with the Nottingham Health Profile (NHP), Sickness Impact Profile (SIP), and self-estimated QoL questionnaire were sent by mail. A test-retest study of 50 people was conducted after one month.

Main outcome measures: Construct and criterion validity, reliability, and sensitivity.

Results: QoL5 correlations with SIP, NHP, Self-estimated QoL were 0.37, 0.52, and 0.76, respectively, and increased among those who were unwell. Cronbach's alpha was 0.69. All correlations in Siegel's test were over 0.6, and the test-retest correlation was 0.82. Only 12 respondents in each group will be needed to detect a difference of 10% in the QoL score between two groups.

Conclusions: QoL5 is a valid global and generic QoL measurement. Despite the use of only five questions, internal consistency and sensitivity were acceptable. So a relevant and practical outcome measurement is available for clinical databases.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Denmark
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Population Surveillance
  • Quality of Life*
  • Registries
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Sickness Impact Profile*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*