Screening commercial drivers for obstructive sleep apnea: translation and validation of Serbian version of Berlin Questionnaire

Qual Life Res. 2016 Feb;25(2):343-349. doi: 10.1007/s11136-015-1087-3. Epub 2015 Aug 1.


Purpose: Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) can lead to severe health consequences. Drivers of motor vehicles with untreated or undiagnosed OSA have a greater risk of traffic accidents. Use of self-reported questionnaires is the first step in OSA diagnosis. The main aim of this study was to perform the translation and validation of Berlin Questionnaire in a sample of commercial drivers.

Methods: After formal translation, validation was performed on a sample of commercial drivers and included evaluation of internal consistency, test-retest reliability, construct and criterion validity. Full-night attended polysomnography or cardiorespiratory polygraphy was used for OSA diagnosis.

Results: One hundred male participants, 24-62 years old, were included. Berlin Questionnaire classified 35 % subjects as potential OSA patients. Polysomnography confirmed OSA in 58 % of the subjects. Berlin Questionnaire showed good internal consistency (Cronbach's alpha 0.82-first category, 0.73-0.95-second category). Test-retest reliability (Cohen's kappa 0.78) was adequate. Berlin score was significantly correlated with OSA category and apnea-hypopnea index (AHI). Sensitivity of Berlin Questionnaire was from 50.9 (AHI ≥ 5) to 75 % (AHI ≥ 30), while specificity ranged from 86 to 70.5 %.

Conclusions: Berlin Questionnaire (Serbian version) showed good measurement properties, creating basis for further research of its usefulness as OSA screening tool in populations of interest.

Keywords: Obstructive; Questionnaires; Sleep apnea; Validation studies.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Accidents, Traffic / prevention & control*
  • Adult
  • Berlin
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Motor Vehicles
  • Polysomnography
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Risk
  • Self Report
  • Serbia
  • Sleep Apnea, Obstructive / diagnosis*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*
  • Translations*
  • Young Adult