Clinimetrics of tristimulus colourimeters in scar assessment: a review of evidence
Jones, H. G.
OBJECTIVE: To review the evidence regarding the use of tristimulus colourimeters (TC) in scar assessment.
METHOD: A literature search was performed using Ovid and the Cochrane database with the search terms 'scar assessment', 'clinimetrics', 'tristimulus colourimeter', 'microcolour', 'chromameter' and 'colour spectrometer'.
RESULTS: Wound colour is usually assessed with a visual analogue scale, such as VSS or POSAS. Research on objectifying the assessment by using an assessment tool has so far been encouraging, but has failed to show a benefit over the visual analogue scales in terms of validity, accuracy and reproducibility. Studies vary in methodological quality.
CONCLUSION: Research on TC clinimetrics has shown moderate to high concurrent validity, reliability and reproducibility of these products in terms of assessing vascularity, but less correlation in terms of pigmentation, when compared with the visual scoring systems. The evidence for using TC is based on a relatively small number of studies, and more research is needed before widespread implementation of TC for assessing scar maturation is recommended.