Objective: To develop and validate a patient report outcome measure (PROM) for clinical practice that can monitor health status of patients with a range of musculoskeletal (MSK) disorders.
Methods: Constructs for inclusion in the MSK-PROM were identified from a consensus process involving patients with musculoskeletal conditions, clinicians, purchasers of healthcare services, and primary care researchers. Psychometric properties of the brief tool, including face and construct validity, repeatability and responsiveness were assessed in a sample of patients with musculoskeletal pain consulting physiotherapy services in the United Kingdom (n=425).
Results: The consensus process identified 10 prioritised domains for monitoring musculoskeletal health status: pain intensity, quality of life, physical capacity, interference with social/leisure activities, emotional well-being, severity of most difficult thing, activities and roles, understanding independence, and overall impact. As the EuroQol (EQ-5D-5L) is a widely adopted PROMs tool and covers the first four domains listed, to reduce patient burden to a minimum the MSK-PROM was designed to capture the remaining six prioritised domains which are not measured by the EQ-5D-5L. The tool demonstrated excellent reliability, construct validity, responsiveness and acceptability to patients and clinicians for use in clinical practice.
Conclusion: We have validated a brief patient reported outcome measure (MSK-PROM) for use in clinical practice to measure musculoskeletal health status and monitor outcomes over time using domains that are meaningful to patients and sensitive to change. Further work will establish whether the MSK-PROM is useful in other musculoskeletal healthcare settings.