Objective: To examine the distribution of the scores, internal consistency, structure, and discriminant validity of the abbreviated version of the World Health Organization Quality of Life (WHOQOL-BREF) assessment in persons with traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI).
Design: Validation study using multitrait analysis and known-groups methods.
Setting: Community and hospital.
Participants: Persons with SCI (N=111) and non-SCI respondents (N=169).
Interventions: Not applicable.
Main outcome measure: The WHOQOL-BREF assessment.
Results: The frequency distribution of the 4 domains of the WHOQOL-BREF assessment was nearly symmetric and showed no floor or ceiling effects. All domains showed good internal consistency (Cronbach alpha range, .74-.78), with the exception of the social relationships domain (alpha=.54). The 4-domain structure of the WHOQOL-BREF assessment was confirmed using multitrait analysis. The discriminant validity of the WHOQOL-BREF assessment in persons with SCI was satisfactory.
Conclusions: The WHOQOL-BREF assessment is suitable for measuring QOL as perceived by a person with SCI.