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PROMIS Pain Interference Short Form
Please visit this website for more information about the instrument: PROMIS Pain Interference Short Forms
The short-term pain interference forms include:
The PROMIS Pain Interference item banks are available on the HealthMeasures website which is the official information and distribution center for PROMIS, Neuro-QoL™, NIH Toolbox®, and ASCQ-Me®
Supplemental: Cerebral Palsy (CP), Huntington's Disease (HD), Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
Exploratory: Myalgic encephalomyelitis/Chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS)
Short Description of Instrument
Construct measured: Self-reported consequences of pain on relevant aspects of one's life.
Generic vs. disease specific: Generic.
Means of administration: Short-forms or computerized adaptive testing (CAT).
Intended respondent: Patient or parent proxy for children ages 5-17.
# of items: 41 (total), 4, 6 or 8 (short form).
Comments/Special Instructions
The PROMIS Pain Interference item banks assess self-reported consequences of pain on relevant aspects of one's life. This includes the extent to which pain hinders engagement with social, cognitive, emotional, physical, and recreational activities. Pain Interference also incorporates items probing sleep and enjoyment in life, though the item bank only contains one sleep item. The pain interference short forms are universal rather than disease specific. All assess pain interference over the past seven days. Pain interference instruments are available for adults (ages 18+), pediatric self-report (ages 8-17) and for parents serving as proxy reporters for their child (youth ages 5-17).
CP-specific Pain Category: Pain Interference
CP-specific ICF Domain: Activity and Participation (World Health Organization, 2001)
Scoring and Psychometric Properties
Scoring: PROMIS instruments are scored using item-level calibrations. Each question usually has five response options ranging in value from one to five. To find the total raw score for a short form with all questions answered, sum the values of the response to each question. For example, for the pediatric 8-item short form, the lowest possible raw score is 8; the highest possible raw score is 40.
A higher PROMIS T-score represents more of the concept being measured. For negatively worded concepts like pain interference, a T-score of 60 is one SD worse than average. By comparison, a pain interference T-score of 40 is one SD better than average.
Standardization Population: For most domains, T-scores relate to the US General Population. See PROMIS Calibrations Testing for further details regarding sample for specific ages and domains.
Scoring Manuals for PROMIS measures are available at: PROMIS Scoring Manuals. See Pain Interference Scoring Manual:
Psychometric Properties: For scores in the T-score range 50-80, the reliability was equivalent to 0.96 to 0.99. Patterns of correlations with other health outcomes supported the construct validity of the item bank. The scores discriminated among persons with different numbers of chronic conditions, disabling conditions, levels of self-reported health, and pain intensity (p < 0.0001). More information about validation is available at: PROMIS Validation.
Strengths: The strength of the six-item version 1.0 instrument lies in its focus on item content and its ability to assess the full range of pain interference measured by the pain interference item bank. When selecting a short form, the main difference is instrument length. Reliability and precision of short forms within a domain are highly similar. Longer short forms generally offer greater correlation (strength of relationship) with the full item bank, as well as greater precision.
If you are working with a sample in which you expect large variability in a domain and you want to include the full range of item content from that domain, you would probably prefer this six-item version 1.0 short form. On the other hand, if you are hoping to capture secondary outcomes data, but have little room for additional measures, you would probably prefer a very brief (four-item) profile short form.
Weaknesses: Reliability and validation were done in US populations, and it would be informative to do research to determine children living in other countries with different languages and cultures would have the same test characteristics (Cunningham et al., 2017).
This tool does not differentiate between interference caused by pain and interference caused by other ME/CFS symptoms, especially post-exertional malaise (PEM). Because of this, it is recommended that other instruments to measure pain and PEM be used in conjunction with the PROMIS Pain Interference Short Form for those with ME/CFS.
Both the short and long forms include questions on pain interference with physical function, including walking, running, and standing. Responses to these questions could be impacted by baseline impairment in physical function. In one study involving children with cerebral palsy, these physical function items were specifically excluded, though it is not clear how this impacts the overall psychometric properties of this measure (Ostojic et al., 2020). This measure has not been validated in children with cerebral palsy nor in a pediatric population with physical disability.
Amtmann D, Cook KF, Jensen MP, Chen WH, Choi S, Revicki D, Cella D, Rothrock N, Keefe F, Callahan L, Lai JS. Development of a PROMIS item bank to measure pain interference. Pain. 2010;150(1):173-182.
Cunningham NR, Kashikar-Zuck S, Mara C, Goldschneider KR, Revicki DA, Dampier C, Sherry DD, Crosby L, Carle A, Cook KF, Morgan EM. Development and validation of the self-reported PROMIS pediatric pain behavior item bank and short form scale. Pain. 2017 Jul;158(7):1323-1331.
Jacobson CJ Jr, Kashikar-Zuck S, Farrell J, Barnett K, Goldschneider K, Dampier C, Cunningham N, Crosby L, DeWitt EM. Qualitative Evaluation of Pediatric Pain Behavior, Quality, and Intensity Item Candidates and the PROMIS Pain Domain Framework in Children with Chronic Pain. J Pain. 2015 Dec;16(12):1243-1255.
Kim J, Chung H, Amtmann D, Revicki DA, Cook KF. Measurement invariance of the PROMIS pain interference item bank across community and clinical samples. Qual Life Res. 2013;22(3):501-507.
PAIN INTERFERENCE A brief guide to the PROMIS© Pain Interference instruments. (2019). Accessed 06Oct2021. Available at:
Varni JW, Stucky BD, Thissen D, Dewitt EM, Irwin DE, Lai JS, Yeatts K, Dewalt DA. PROMIS Pediatric Pain Interference Scale: an item response theory analysis of the pediatric pain item bank. J Pain. 2010 Nov;11(11):1109-19.
World health Organization (2001). International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) Retrieved 19August2021
Ostojic K, Paget S, Kyriagis M, Morrow A. Acute and Chronic Pain in Children and Adolescents with Cerebral Palsy: Prevalence, Interference, and Management. Arch Phys Med Rehabil. 2020 Feb;101(2):213-219.
Shearer HM, C?tÉ P, Hogg-Johnson S, McKeever P, Fehlings DL. Identifying pain trajectories in children and youth with cerebral palsy: a pilot study. BMC Pediatr. 2021 Sep 29;21(1):428.
Document last updated August 2022
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