Validation of the French version of the brief pain inventory in Canadian veterans suffering from traumatic stress

J Pain Symptom Manage. 2007 Jun;33(6):720-6. doi: 10.1016/j.jpainsymman.2006.09.031.


Although pain is a significant clinical problem in individuals suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), reliable and valid measures of pain for this population are lacking. The goal of this study was to validate the Brief Pain Inventory (BPI) in French-speaking veterans suffering from PTSD (n=130). We administered the BPI, as well as measures of PTSD, health status, quality of life, and social desirability, to veterans being assessed or treated for PTSD at a Veterans Affairs Canada clinic. The BPI showed strong internal consistency, as evidenced by Cronbach's alphas of 0.90 and 0.92 for the severity and interference subscales, respectively. Similar to previous findings, a two-factor structure (pain severity and pain interference) was found using an exploratory factor analysis. The two factors explained nearly 73% of the variance of the instrument. The BPI was also strongly correlated with health status and quality of life in the physical domain. In this veteran sample, nearly 87% of the veterans suffered from significant current pain. Veterans in our sample reported rates of pain severity that were similar to or higher than most of those reported by cancer patients and others with significant physical disability/illness. Overall, the French version of the BPI is a reliable, valid measure of pain in PTSD-suffering populations. Pain is a major issue in veterans with PTSD, and should be screened for with instruments such as the BPI.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Canada
  • Humans
  • Language*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain / diagnosis*
  • Pain / epidemiology
  • Pain Measurement*
  • Prevalence
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / complications*
  • Veterans / statistics & numerical data*