COSMIN database

Review article: a systematic review of cancer-related fatigue measurement questionnaires

Seyidova-Khoshknabi, D., Davis, M. P., and Walsh, D.
PURPOSE: Cancer-related fatigue (CRF) is a common symptom experienced by patients in all stages and in cancer survivors. The main objectives of this review were to identify validated CRF instruments, and populations in whom these tools have been validated.

METHODS: We used a systematic review methodology. Three separate searches were performed using different MeSH terms in Pub Med and Ovid databases. Articles were analyzed for validation and reliability.

RESULTS: A total of 1453 papers from 3 different searches identified 40 instruments (3 unidimensional and 37 multidimensional). Instruments varied by psychometric properties, items, scale, dimension, cancer site, and population. Five were optimally tested for validity and reliability. Completion rates, sensitivity to change, and test-retest reliability were reported for a few.

DISCUSSION: Most tools had been validated in mixed populations and are relatively insensitive to differences in fatigue to cancer stage. Most instruments are burdensome for those with advanced cancer. The Brief Fatigue Inventory and 3 fatigue items of the European Organization for Research and Treatment Quality of Life Questionnaire Fatigue Scale (EORTC QLQ-C30) are optimal instruments in advanced cancer.

CONCLUSIONS: In all, 40 CRF instruments were identified. Validity and reliability varied by questionnaire. The ideal item numbers, scale, and domains are not established and may be population dependent.
Am J Hosp Palliat Care
1938-2715 (Electronic)
Publication year:
Symptom status:
Physical state
Functional status:
Physical functioning
Adults (18-65)
Children (0-18)
Seniors (65+)
Neoplasms and related symptoms
PRO / non-PRO:
Patient Reported Outcome
Type of measurement instrument:
1 - Questionnaires
16-Item Newly Developed CRF Instrument
BFI - Brief Fatigue Inventory
CFS - Cancer Fatigue Scale
CFS - Childhood Fatigue Scale
CRFDS - Cancer-Related Fatigue Distress Scale
EORTC QLQ-C30 - European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaires Core-30 item (ALSO shortened version)   
FACT-An - Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-Anemia
FACT-F - Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-Fatigue
FACT-G - Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy-General
FFIS - Fatigue Functional Impact Scale
FIB - Fatigue Item Bank
FS-A - Fatigue Scale-Adolescents
FS-C (Also Fs-C-C) - Fatigue Scale-Children
FSI - Fatigue Symptom Inventory
FSS - Fatigue Severity Scale (versions: FSS-7 - 7-item version and FSS-5 - 5-item version)   
MAF - Multidimensional Assessment of Fatigue
MFI - Multidimensional Fatigue Inventory   
MFS Ca Module - Multidimensional Fatigue Scale Cancer Module
MFSI-SF - Multidimensional Fatigue Symptom Inventory-Short Form
PEDQLI - Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory
PedsQL 3.0 Cancer Module - Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory Cancer Module
PedsQL - Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory
PFS - Parent Fatigue Scale
PFS - Piper Fatigue Scale (versions: PFS-revised)
POMS - Profile of Mood States
SCFS-r - Schwartz Cancer Fatigue Scale revised
SCFS - Schwartz Cancer Fatigue Scale
SFS - Staff Fatigue Scale
SOFI - Swedish Occupational Fatigue Inventory
VAS-F - Visual Analogue Scale for Fatigue [alias: LFS - Lee Fatigue Scale]
WCFS - Wu Cancer Fatigue Scale (versions: WCFS-9/revised)