Objective: Recent work suggests that psychological influence on pain intensity and knee function should be considered for patients after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACLR). The Tampa Scale for Kinesiophobia (TSK) and Pain Catastrophizing Scale (PCS) have been used to determine psychological influence in these patients. However, TSK and PCS factor structures have not been described for patients with ACLR. This study investigated 2 groups of patients post-ACLR to determine if the use of shortened questionnaires is warranted.
Methods: Cross-sectional study in which patients completed measures during early (n=105, median days from surgery=56.0) and late (n=184, median days from surgery=195.0) postoperative phases of ACLR rehabilitation.
Results: Shortened questionnaires for fear of pain, fear of injury, and somatic focus were generated for the TSK-11. A shortened questionnaire for magnification/helplessness and rumination was generated for the PCS in the late group only. There were minimal differences in the shortened questionnaires for clinical subgroups based on sex, ACLR graft type, method of injury, or nature of injury. Correlation and regression analyses suggested a shortened version of the TSK-11 for fear of injury was appropriate for use in the early postoperative phase, whereas the original TSK-11 scale may be appropriate for use in the late postoperative phase. There were no shortened versions of the PCS for consideration in the early postoperative phase, but a shortened version for magnification/helplessness was appropriate for use in the late postoperative phase.
Discussion: Shortened versions of the TSK-11 and PCS may be appropriate for ACLR populations, depending on the postoperative phase. These data may guide future research of psychological factors in ACLR populations so that levels predictive of risk for developing chronic pain and/or inability to return to pre-injury activity levels can be determined.