The infant gastroesophageal reflux questionnaire revised: development and validation as an evaluative instrument

Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2006 May;4(5):588-96. doi: 10.1016/j.cgh.2006.02.016.


Background & aims: Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is frequently experienced by infants, and disease-specific measures are needed to evaluate treatment benefits. We revised the Infant Gastroesophageal Reflux Questionnaire (I-GERQ) on the basis of information from parents of infants with GERD and physicians and subjected it to a psychometric evaluation.

Methods: A 3-week, multi-country observational study of 185 caregivers of infants younger than 18 months with GERD and 93 caregivers of control infants was conducted. Caregivers completed the I-GERQ-R weekly and recorded symptoms in a Daily Diary. Caregivers and physicians rated global disease severity and change in overall GERD symptoms.

Results: Slightly more than half of infants were male with a mean age of 6.7 months, and most infants had been diagnosed with GERD for a little more than 2 months (mean, 66.7 days). Internal consistency reliability for the I-GERQ-R ranged from 0.86 to 0.87, and test-retest reliability was 0.85. Construct validity was demonstrated by significant differences between cases and controls on all item scores (all P<.01) and the total score (P<.0001), correlations with relevant Daily Diary symptoms, and both physician-rated (P<.05) and caregiver-rated disease severity (P<.05). Mean baseline to 3-week I-GERQ-R change scores for those infants whose caregivers reported improvement was -5.7 compared with -0.3 for those whose caregivers reported worse/same (P<.001). Physician ratings of change resulted in similar findings, with mean changes of -5.7 for those rated improved and -0.1 for those rated as worse/same (P<.0001).

Conclusion: This study demonstrated the I-GERQ-R is a reliable, valid, and clinically responsive measure of infant GERD symptoms.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Caregivers
  • Child Development / physiology
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Gastroesophageal Reflux / diagnosis*
  • Gastroesophageal Reflux / epidemiology*
  • Gastroesophageal Reflux / therapy
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Pediatrics
  • Probability
  • Quality of Life*
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Risk Factors
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Sickness Impact Profile
  • Surveys and Questionnaires / standards*