Examining fatigue in COPD: development, validity and reliability of a modified version of FACIT-F scale

K. Al-shair*, H. Muellerova, J. Yorke, S.I. Rennard, E.F.M. Wouters, N.A. Hanania, A. Sharafkhaneh, J. Vestbo, the ECLIPSE Investigators

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


ABSTRACT: INTRODUCTION: Fatigue is a disruptive symptom that inhibits normal functional performance of COPD patients in daily activities. The availability of a short, simple, reliable and valid scale would improve assessment of the characteristics and influence of fatigue in COPD. METHODS: At baseline, 2107 COPD patients from the ECLIPSE cohort completed the Functional Assessment of Chronic Illness Therapy Fatigue (FACIT-F) scale. We used well-structured classic method, the principal components analysis (PCA) and Rasch analysis for structurally examining the 13-item FACIT-F. RESULTS: Four items were less able to capture fatigue characteristics in COPD and were deleted. PCA was applied to the remaining 9 items of the modified FACIT-F and resulted in three interpretable dimensions: i) general (5 items); ii) functional ability (2 items); and iii) psychosocial fatigue (2 items). The modified FACIT-F had high internal consistency (Cronbach's alpha = 0.91) and it did not fit a uni-dimensional Rasch model, confirming the prior output from the PCA. The correlations between total score and each dimension were [GREATER-THAN OR EQUAL TO] 0.64 and within dimensions [GREATER-THAN OR EQUAL TO]0.43 (p < 0.001 for all).The original and modified FACIT-F had significant convergent validity; its scores were associated with SGRQ total score (0.69 and 0.7) and mMRC dyspnoea scores (0.48 and 0.47), (p = <0.001 for all). The scale had meaningful discriminating ability in identifying patients with poor exercise performance and more depressive symptoms. CONCLUSION: The original and modified FACIT-F are valid and reliable scales in COPD. The modified version is shorter and measures not only total fatigue but also its sub-components in COPD.
Original languageEnglish
Article number100
Number of pages8
JournalHealth and Quality of Life Outcomes
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 23 Aug 2012


  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • Fatigue
  • Exercise capacity
  • Health status


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