Development and initial evaluation of the spinal cord injury-functional index

Short Title:
Model System:
Reference Type:
Journal Article
Accession No.:
Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Year, Volume, Issue, Page(s):
2012, vol. 93, issue 10, pp 1733-1750
Publication Website:
Article describes the calibration of the Spinal Cord Injury-Functional Index (SCI-FI) and reports on the initial psychometric evaluation of the SCI-FI scales in each content domain. SCI-FI instrument data were obtained from 855 participants with traumatic spinal cord injury (SCI) recruited from 6 SCI Model Systems and stratified by diagnosis, severity, and time since injury. Item response theory analyses confirmed the unidimensionality of 5 SCI-FI scales: basic mobility (54 items), fine motor function (36 items), self-care (90 items), ambulation (39 items), and wheelchair mobility (56 items). All SCI-FI scales revealed strong psychometric properties. High correlations of scores on simulated computer adaptive testing (CAT) with the overall SCI-FI domain scores indicated excellent potential for CAT to accurately characterize functional profiles of adults with SCI. Overall, there was very little loss of measurement reliability or precision using CAT compared with the full item bank; however, there was some loss of reliability and precision at the lower and upper ranges of each scale, corresponding to regions where there were few questions in the item banks. The use of CAT to administer the SCI-FI will minimize assessment burden, while allowing for the comprehensive assessment of the functional abilities of adults with SCI.
Jette A, Tulsky DS, Ni P, Kisala PA, Slavin M, Dijkers MP, Heinemann AW, Tate DG, Whiteneck G, Charlifue S, Houlihan B, Williams W, Kirshblum S, Dyson-Hudson T, Zanca J, Fyffe D
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