A new study published in the Clinical Journal of Pain conducted a review of the Numeric Pain Rating Scale (NPRS) and the Visual Analog Scale (VAS) as a method for patients to report outcome measures in neck pain research.
Neck pain specifically has accounted for the ninth highest burden of all-cause years lived with disability worldwide and second highest musculoskeletal disorder after low back pain. In efforts to mitigate the burden of neck pain, researchers sought validated self-report outcome measures (patient-reported outcomes, PROs) to track the change in pain for evaluation of intervention strategies and to identify patient subcategories.
Throughout the course of the study, researchers found NPRS and VAS to provide reliable scores related to patient outcome measures. The NPRS can be used as a single assessment complimenting a more comprehensive multi-item patient-reported outcome measure in neck pain research and practice.
The investigators are part of the Consortium Group CATWAD (Core Outcome Domain Set for Whiplash-Associated Disorders), and represented the University of Western Ontario, Canada; Western University, London; University of Waterloo, Canada; University of Washington, Harborview Injury Prevention & Research Center (HIPRC).