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Translation and validation of the Dutch language version of the CDC Symptom Inventory for Assessment of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS).

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By RC Vemeulen • • November 1, 2006

Journal: Population Health Metrics. 2006 Oct 18;4(1):12 [E-publication ahead of print] [Note: This is an Open Access article. It is available for free in PDF at] Author: Vermeulen, RC. PMID: 17049095

Background: In a study by Wagner, et al. the CDC Symptom Inventory was validated in a population that was selected from the inhabitants of a city in the USA, and proved reliable for the assessment of the symptoms accompanying the Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). The Dutch translation of the CDC Symptom Inventory is compared to the original, and the psychometric properties are presented for patients in a tertiary care setting.

Methods: A total of 139 consecutive patients who visited the CFS Center Amsterdam for the first time were asked to complete the CDC Symptom Inventory in the Dutch Language Version (DLV) together with the usual set of questionnaires. Sixty-one patients had Chronic Fatigue (CF) and 78 patients fulfilled the criteria for CFS. Forty-three healthy accompanying persons completed the CDC Symptom Inventory DLV, the Physical Functioning scale of the Medical Outcome Survey Short Form-36 DLV, and the Fatigue and Concentration scales of the Checklist Individual Strength (CIS-20).

Results: The healthy control group contained fewer women and was overall older than the patient groups. The influence of gender on the CDC Symptom Inventory DLV was significant but the effect of age was not. The Dutch version had a good internal consistency and convergent validity. The results were comparable to the original English version, but the sex-related difference needs further study.

Conclusion: The Dutch version of the CDC Symptom Inventory is a reliable tool for the assessment of the secondary criteria for CFS. The results show that it is comparable to the outcome of studies in English-speaking countries.

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