Assessing Patient Reported Outcomes Measures via Phone Interviews Versus Patient Self-Survey in the Clinic: Are We Measuring the Same Thing?

Owoicho Adogwa, Aladine A. Elsamadicy, Joseph Cheng, Carlos Bagley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background Longitudinally following patients requires a full-time employee (FTE)-dependent data inflow infrastructure. There are efforts to capture patient-reported outcomes (PROs) by the use of non-FTE-dependent methodologies. In this study, we set out to assess the reliability of PRO data captured via FTE-dependent compared with non-FTE-dependent methodologies. Methods A total of 119 adult patients (65 men) who underwent 1-and 2-level lumbar fusions at Duke University Medical Center were enrolled in this prospective study. Enrollment criteria included available demographic, clinical, and PRO data. All patients completed 2 sets of questionnaires - the first a phone interviews and the second a self-survey. There was at least a 2-week period between the phone interviews and self-survey. Questionnaires included the Oswestry Disability Index (ODI), the visual analog scale for back pain (VAS-BP), and the visual analog scale for leg pain (VAS-LP). Repeated-measures analysis of variance was used to compare the reliability of baseline PRO data captured. Results A total of 39.49% of patients were smokers, 21.00% had diabetes, and 11.76% had coronary artery disease; 26.89% reported history of anxiety disorder, and 28.57% reported history of depression. A total of 97.47% of patients had a high-school diploma or General Education Development, and 49.57% attained a 4-year college degree or postgraduate degree. We observed a high correlation between baseline PRO data captured between FTE-dependent versus non-FTE dependent methodologies (ODI: r = -0.89, VAS-BP: r = 0.74, VAS-LP: r = 0.70). There was no difference in PROs of baseline pain and functional disability between FTE-dependent and non-FTE-dependent methodologies: baseline ODI (FTE-dependent: 47.73 ± 16.77 [mean ± SD] vs. non-FTE-dependent: 45.81 ± 12.11, P = 0.39), VAS-LP (FTE-dependent: 6.13 ± 2.78 vs. non-FTE-dependent: 6.46 ± 2.79, P = 0.36) and VAS-BP (FTE-dependent: 6.33 ± 2.90 vs. non-FTE-dependent: 6.53 ± 2.48, P = 0.57). Conclusion Our study suggests that there is great reliability between PRO data captured between FTE-dependent and non-FTE-dependent methodologies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)230-234
Number of pages5
JournalWorld neurosurgery
StatePublished - Mar 1 2016


  • FTE-dependent
  • Key words Clinic surveys
  • Non-FTE dependent
  • Oswestry Disability Index
  • PROs
  • Patient-reported outcomes
  • Phone interviews
  • Visual analog score

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Clinical Neurology


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