Quality of Life Research

, Volume 23, Issue 7, pp 2031–2035 | Cite as

Comparing PROMIS computer-adaptive tests to the Brief Symptom Inventory in patients with prostate cancer

  • George Baum
  • Karen Basen-Engquist
  • Maria C. Swartz
  • Patricia A. Parker
  • Cindy L. Carmack
Brief Communication



This study assessed whether the Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS) computer-adaptive tests (CATs) provided results similar to those of the Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI) with a low patient burden.


Secondary data analysis of 136 prostate cancer patients who completed the 53-item BSI and the PROMIS CATs assessing depression, anxiety, and hostility.


The PROMIS CATs and BSI correlated significantly in measures of depression (.85), anxiety (.76), and anger/hostility (.66; p < .001 for all). Using our BSI cutoff points for depression, anxiety, and anger/hostility, ROC analysis yielded areas under the curve of .966 [standard error (SE) = .014, p < .001], .975 (SE = .012, p < .001), and .952 (SE = .027, p < .001), respectively.


PROMIS CATs were highly correlated with the BSI subscales, indicating that the CATs performed well compared with the BSI, a widely used psychosocial measure.


Computer-adaptive tests BSI Brief Symptom Inventory Prostate cancer Quality of life PROMIS Health surveys 



Patient-reported outcome


Computer-adaptive test


Quality of life


National Institutes of Health


Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System


Brief Symptom Inventory


Receiver operating characteristic curve



This study is supported in part by the Patient-Reported Outcomes, Survey, and Population Research (PROSPR) Shared Resource; the Cancer Center Support Grant CA16672, given to The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center by the National Institutes of Health; and 5R21CA126854-02, given to Cindy L. Carmack by the National Cancer Institute.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • George Baum
    • 1
  • Karen Basen-Engquist
    • 1
  • Maria C. Swartz
    • 1
    • 2
  • Patricia A. Parker
    • 1
  • Cindy L. Carmack
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Behavioral ScienceThe University of Texas, MD Anderson Cancer CenterHoustonUSA
  2. 2.The University of Texas School of Public Health at HoustonHoustonUSA

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