• electronic data capture;
  • EQ-5D;
  • EuroQoL;
  • IBS-QOL;
  • irritable bowel syndrome;
  • quality of life;
  • work productivity;


Objectives:  To assess the comparability, reliability, and subject acceptability of electronic data capture (EDC) versions of Irritable Bowel Syndrome—Quality of Life (IBS-QOL), EuroQoL (EQ-5D) and Work Productivity and Activity Impairment (WPAI:IBS) instruments.

Methods:  Comparability of EDC and paper questionnaires was evaluated in 72 subjects with IBS who completed a baseline EDC or paper questionnaire, a crossover questionnaire 24 hours later, and a retest of the crossover version at 1 week. The EDC version was presented on a hand-held device. Comparability was assessed using paired t-test statistics, intraclass correlation coefficients (ICC) and tests for internal consistency (Cronbach's alpha).

Results:  No significant differences were found between scores obtained by paper questionnaire and EDC at the baseline and crossover assessments. ICCs between baseline and crossover assessments ranged from 0.83 to 0.96 for the IBS-QOL scores, 0.82 to 0.96 for the WPAI:IBS scores, and 0.77 to 0.82 for the EQ-5D. Internal consistency was comparable for the two data collection methods for the IBS-QOL overall score (0.96) and subscales and the EQ-5D Index (0.70 vs. 0.74). Retest statistics (ICC) were generally comparable between the EDC and paper versions for all scores. Ease of use was comparable for the two modes of administration, but more patients preferred EDC (47.2%) than the paper questionnaire (23.6%).

Conclusions:  EDC versions of the IBS-QOL, EQ-5D, and WPAI:IBS are comparable to paper questionnaires in internal consistency and test–retest reliability, and have greater patient acceptability.