Comparison of Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) to Odom’s Criteria for Use in Cervical Clinical Evaluation

Keywords: pain, survey, outcome, cervical spine, technique

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     Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) and Odom’s Criteria are both widely used in clinical trials. An objective evaluation of the comparability of the two scales has never been reported.
     Prospectively, we utilized both systems to evaluate their correlation and the ease of their use.
     Surveys containing Odoms and VAS questions were distributed to complete independently during 1,203 visits. Subsequently, the patients were given verbal instruction if needed. The surveys were then prospectively reviewed for two indicators suggesting the patient had difficulty selecting one answer; frequencies of multiple selections and written comments were compared between survey types using Fisher’s Exact test. Survey types were then tested for concordance using Pearson Correlation coefficient.
     Patients more frequently (pThere was a positive significant correlation between survey types (r=0.65; p<0.001).
     This is a study based on survey data.
     Based on the frequency of multiple responses and comments, it appears that patients feel that the VAS is more difficult to complete in a way that reflects their true pain level.
     Quantitatively, these survey methods correlate in a statistically significant fashion.


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