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Establishing the Substantial Clinical Benefit in a Non-Shoulder Hand and Upper Extremity Population for the QuickDASH and PROMIS Upper Extremity and Physical Function Computer Adaptive Tests

Published:February 21, 2022DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhsa.2021.12.013

      Purpose

      It is unclear what score changes on the abbreviated Disabilities of the Arm, Hand, and Shoulder (QuickDASH), Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS) upper extremity (UE) computer adaptive test (CAT), and PROMIS physical function (PF) CAT represent a substantial improvement. We calculated the substantial clinical benefit (SCB) for these 3 instruments in a non-shoulder hand and upper extremity population.

      Methods

      Adult patients treated between March 2015 and September 2019 at a single academic tertiary institution were identified. The QuickDASH, PROMIS UE CAT v2.0, and PROMIS PF CAT v2.0 scores were collected using a tablet computer. Responses to the QuickDASH both at baseline and follow-up 6 ± 4 weeks later, and a response to the anchor question “Compared to your first evaluation at the University Orthopaedic Center, how would you describe your physical function level now?” were required for inclusion. A second anchor question querying treatment-related improvement was also used. The SCB was calculated using an anchor-based approach comparing the mean change difference between groups reporting no change and a maximal change for both anchor questions.

      Results

      Of 1,119 included participants, the mean age was 48 ± 17 years, 53% were women, and half were recovering from surgery. Score changes between baseline and follow-up were significantly different between groups reporting no improvement and maximal improvement on both anchor questions. The SCB values ranged between 16.9 and 22.8 on the QuickDASH, 5.9 and 7.1 on the UE CAT, and 3.5 and 6.7 on the PF CAT.

      Conclusions

      These score improvements for the QuickDASH, UE CAT, and PF CAT represent a substantial clinical improvement in a non-shoulder hand and upper extremity population.

      Clinical relevance

      These SCB estimates may assist with the interpretation of outcome scores at a population level.

      Key words

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