The translation of existing pain measurement scales is considered important in producing internationally comparable measures for evidence based practice. In measuring the pain experience, the short-form of McGill's pain questionnaire (SF-MPQ) is one of the most widely used and translated instruments. The purpose of this study was to examine whether the Turkish version of the SF-MPQ is a valid and reliable tool to assess pain and to be used as a clinical and research instrument. Translation retranslation of the English version of the SF-MPQ was done blindly and independently by four individuals and adapted by a team. Eighty-nine rheumatological patients awaiting control by a rheumatologist were assessed by the Turkish version of the SF-MPQ in the morning and in the afternoon of the same day. Internal consistency was found adequate at both assessments with Cronbach's alpha 0.705 for test and 0.713 for retest. For reliability of the total, sensory, affective, and evaluative total pain intensity, high intraclass correlations were demonstrated (0.891, 0.868, 0.716, and 0.796, respectively). Correlation of total, sensory and affective score with the numeric rating scale was tested for construct validity demonstrating r = 0.637 (p < 0.001) for test and r = 0.700 (p < 0.001) for retest. Correlation with erythrocycte sedimentation rates for concurrent validity was found to be r = 0.518 (p < 0.001) for test and r = 0.497 (p < 0.001) for retest. The results of this study indicate that the Turkish version of the SF-MPQ is a reliable and valid instrument for the measurement of pain in Turkish speaking patients with rheumatoid arthritis.