The development of the irritable bowel syndrome-behavioral responses questionnaire

J Psychosom Res. 2010 Sep;69(3):319-25. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychores.2010.01.025. Epub 2010 Mar 16.


Objective: Unhelpful behavior related to irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is often targeted and expected to change in treatments such as cognitive behavioral therapies. However, no scale has previously been produced to assess these dimensions. The aim of this study was to develop and validate an IBS-specific behavioral responses questionnaire.

Methods: A total of 153 patients with IBS as diagnosed by a general practitioner completed the 28-item Irritable Bowel Syndrome-Behavioral Responses Questionnaire (IBS-BRQ). A total of 117 persons without IBS also completed the IBS-BRQ and were used as a control group. Tests of internal consistency and principal components analyses (PCAs) were performed on both sets of data.

Results: The scale was found to be both reliable and valid with a high degree of internal consistency for both IBS patients (Cronbach's alpha=.86) and controls (Cronbach's alpha=.89). The scale differentiated significantly between IBS patients and controls (F=221, P<.01). The PCA supported a two-factor solution in both sets of data. Two items were removed from the scale due to low discriminative ability. The criterion validity was high as evidenced by a strong correlation with the Cognitive Scale for Functional Bowel Disorders (CS-FBD) (r =.67, P<.001).

Conclusion: The IBS-BRQ is a valid and reliable scale that can be used for clinical as well as empirical purposes.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Female
  • Humans
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome / psychology*
  • Male
  • Principal Component Analysis
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Psychometrics
  • Quality of Life
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Social Adjustment
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*