BACKGROUND: Patients suffering from Complex Regional Pain Syndrome commonly complain of substantial limitations in their activities of daily living. The Radboud Skills Questionnaire measures alterations in the level of disability of patients with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, but this instrument is currently not available in German. The goals of our study were to translate the Dutch Radboud Skills Questionnaire into German and to assess its external criterion validity with the German version of the Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand Questionnaire.
METHODS: We translated the Radboud Skills Questionnaire according to published guidelines. Demographic data and validity were assessed in 57 consecutive patients with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome 1 of the upper extremity. Information on age, duration of symptoms, type of Complex Regional Pain Syndrome 1 and type of initiating event was obtained. We assessed the external criterion validity by comparing the German Radboud Skills Questionnaire and the German Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand Questionnaire and calculated the prediction intervals.
RESULTS: Score values ranged from 55.4 +/- 22.0 for the Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand Questionnaire score and 140.1 +/- 39.2 for the Radboud Skills Questionnaire. We found a high correlation between the Radboud Skills Questionnaire and the Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand Questionnaire (R2 = 0.83).
CONCLUSION: This validation of the Radboud Skills Questionnaire demonstrates that this German version is a simple and accurate instrument to assess and quantify disabilities of patients suffering from Complex Regional Pain Syndrome 1 of the upper extremity for clinical and research purposes.