Development and psychometric testing of an instrument to measure the patient’s experience of external radiotherapy: The Radiotherapy Experience Questionnaire (RTEQ)
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
The patient’s perception of radiotherapy (RT) procedures and equipment is important to evaluate as a complement to endpoints such as treatment outcome and reproducibility. There is a lack of a proper, psychometrically robust instrument to evaluate the patient’s comfort and experience of the RT procedure. Hence, this study aimed to develop and test an instrument to measure the patient’s experience during external RT.
Material and Methods
A preliminary 34-item questionnaire was generated from research literature, expert consultations and patient interviews, and it was distributed to patients (n = 825) at 8 RT units in Sweden. The answers were subjected to item analysis and reduction by using exploratory factor analysis. The reliability of the final questionnaire was evaluated using Cronbach´s alpha. Mean scale scores were compared across gender, length of RT and treatment area.
Most items were highly skewed towards positive responses. Scree plot analyses of the 34-timen correlation matrix identified six underlying themes explaining 68% of the total variance. After item reduction, the 6 themes explained 73% of the variance in a 23-item questionnaire. Cronbach´s alpha was satisfactory for all themes (between 0.79 and 0.9). Significant differences between treatment areas were found for two scales: situational discomfort and situational coping.
The RT Experience Questionnaire is a tentatively valid and reliable instrument to measure how patients experience the RT session process and the environment in the treatment room.
patient experience; radiotherapy; questionnaire; instrument
Cancer and Oncology
Research subject Oncology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-127452OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-127452DiVA: diva2:1046327