A user's survey of the clinical application and content validity of the DASH (Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand) outcome measure

Publication type
Journal article
Kennedy CA Beaton DE
Date published
2017 Jan 25
Journal of Hand Therapy
Open Access?

STUDY DESIGN: Survey. PURPOSE OF THE STUDY: To elicit feedback on the clinical use and content validity of the Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand (DASH) outcome measure from frontline users of the instrument. METHODS: A cross-sectional survey was administered to registered DASH users and inquired about how the DASH was being used and to identify the informational value of items of the DASH (content validity). RESULTS: About 172 completed the survey. One or both of the DASH and/or QuickDASH were consistently (89.5%) being used. About 90% were using it in adults (21-65 years), and at least 70% were using it across the entire extremity, and to a lesser extent, 10% reported using it in isolated neck injuries. Most respondents (66.9%-75.8%) were using the DASH in musculoskeletal (MSK) disorders, with some applying it for other more unique or non-MSK conditions (2.5%-16.6%). All but 1 of the 30 DASH items had at least 10% endorsement as being informative, and 4 items were identified as being problematic by greater than 20%. CONCLUSIONS: The DASH is being used as intended (whole extremity and MSK conditions), and in addition, it is being used in different body regions and diverse conditions. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: Not applicable (descriptive survey)