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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 7-13

Reliability and validity of anonymous web-based surveys on back pain-related disability

1 Department of Neurosurgery, Specialist Medical Center, Polanica-Zdroj, Poland
2 Department of Neurosurgery, Regional Medical Center, Opole, Poland
3 Department of Orthopedics and Traumatology, University of Medical Sciences, Poznan, Poland
4 Department of Neurosurgery, Regional Neurosurgery and Neurotrauma Center, Zielona Gora, Poland

Correspondence Address:
Grzegorz Miekisiak
Department of Neurosurgery, Specialist Medical Center, ul. Jana Pawla II 2, 57-320 Polanica-Zdroj
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/EJSS.EJSS_2_17

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Purpose: To evaluate the reliability and validity of anonymous web-based surveys on back pain-related disability by comparing psychometric properties of identical Web-based and paper-based PROMs. Methods: The tested instrument was the Core Outcome Measure Index (COMI), a PROM specific to the low back pain. The WBS was open and anonymous, the Paper-Based Survey (PBS) was administered in several hospitals. Besides COMI both surveys contained assorted questions enabling testing of key psychometric properties. Results: A total of 2318 respondents completed the WBS, 2285 were included in the study, the response rate was 40.60%. 169 subjects completed the PBS, data of 164 was included. The properties evaluated with a single test administration, i.e.: floor and ceiling effect, internal consistency, exploratory factor analysis, and convergent validity were very similar in both groups. The test-retest validity requiring repeated test administration was negatively affected by the low rate of returning respondents in the WBS group. Conclusions: The comparison of two methods of survey administration shows that the open anonymous web-based surveys are valid and reliable sources of data.

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