Antonini, A., Abbruzzese, G., Ferini-Strambi, L. et al. Neurol Sci (2013) 34: 683. doi:10.1007/s10072-012-1112-z
The Movement Disorder Society-sponsored revision of the Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale (MDS-UPDRS) has been available in English since 2008. As part of this process, the MDS-UPDRS organizing team developed guidelines for development of official non-English translations. We present here the formal process for completing officially approved non-English versions of the MDS-UPDRS and specifically focus on the first of these versions in Italian. The MDS-UPDRS was translated into Italian and tested in 377 native-Italian speaking PD patients. Confirmatory and exploratory factor analyses determined whether the factor structure for the English-language MDS-UPDRS could be confirmed in data collected using the Italian translation. To be designated an ‘Official MDS translation,’ the Comparative Fit Index (CFI) had to be ≥0.90 relative to the English-language version. For all four parts of the Italian MDS-UPDRS, the CFI, in comparison with the English-language data, was ≥0.94. Exploratory factor analyses revealed some differences between the two datasets, however these differences were considered to be within an acceptable range. The Italian version of the MDS-UPDRS reaches the criterion to be designated as an Official Translation and is now available for use. This protocol will serve as outline for further validation of this in multiple languages.