A validity study of the WHOQOL-BREF assessment in persons with traumatic spinal cord injury

Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2004 Nov;85(11):1890-5. doi: 10.1016/j.apmr.2004.02.032.


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.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living
  • Adult
  • Attitude to Health*
  • Body Image
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Discriminant Analysis
  • Factor Analysis, Statistical
  • Female
  • Health Status Indicators
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Health
  • Middle Aged
  • Psychometrics
  • Quality of Life*
  • Regression Analysis
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Social Behavior
  • Spinal Cord Injuries / psychology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires / standards*
  • Taiwan
  • World Health Organization*