BARCELONA — A free screening tool may help clinicians better document and manage their multiple sclerosis (MS) patients’ symptoms, according to data presented at the European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis Congress in Barcelona.
Ilya Kister, MD, of NYU Langone Medical Center, and colleagues developed the symptoMScreen tool to help clinicians rapidly assess MS symptom severity and in turn improve patient-clinician communication and symptom management. The single-page test includes a battery of seven-point Likert scales for 11 domains commonly affected by MS: mobility, dexterity, vision, fatigue, cognition, bladder function, sensation, spasticity, body pain, depression and anxiety. The researchers sought to validate symptoMScreen against Performance Scales (PS) commonly used to evaluate MS symptom severity.
In all, 280 patients with MS (mean age 46.8 years; 77% female; mean disease duration 11.6 years) completed both the symptoMScreen assessment and PSs. Composite symptoMScreen score correlated strongly with combined PS score (r=0.92, P< 0.0001), and symptoMScreen subscores correlated strongly with criterion measures of respective PS (r=0.72-0.91, P< 0.0001), demonstrating excellent criterion and construct validity.
“It takes approximately one minute for patients to complete, and can help clinicians to better document, understand, and manage their patients’ symptoms,” the authors concluded, noting that the screening tool is currently available for free for use by clinicians and researchers.
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- Green R et al. Abstract EP1269. Presented at: The European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ECTRIMS) Congress; Oct. 7-10, 2015; Barcelona.