The Cognitive and Behavioural Responses to Symptoms Questionnaire (CBRQ): Development, Reliability and Validity across several Long-Term Conditions

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Abstract

Objectives: Cognitive and behavioural responses to symptoms can worsen or maintain the severity of symptoms across long-term conditions (LTCs). Although the Cognitive and Behavioural Responses Questionnaire (CBRQ) has been used in research, its original development and psychometric properties as a transdiagnostic measure have not been reported. Our aim was to evaluate the psychometric properties of the CBRQ and a recently proposed short version, across different LTCs. Design: Psychometric validation study. Methods: Confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) tested the factor structure of the CBRQ in two datasets from the CBRQ's original development; (chronic fatigue syndrome, N = 230; and multiple sclerosis, N = 221) and in additional groups: haemodialysis (N = 174), inflammatory bowel disease (N = 182) and chronic dizziness (N = 185). Scale reliability and construct validity were assessed. The factor structure of the shortened CBRQ (CBRQ-SF) was also assessed. Results: CFA revealed that a 7-or 8-factor structure had generally appropriate fit supporting the originally proposed 7 factors (Fear avoidance, Damage beliefs, Catastrophising, Embarrassment avoidance, Symptom focusing, All-or-nothing behaviour and Avoidance/Resting behaviour). Omega coefficients indicated satisfactory internal reliability. Correlations with related constructs suggested construct validity. The scale appeared sensitive to change. The CBRQ-SF also displayed good psychometric quality, with a better model fit than the CBRQ. Conclusions: The CBRQ and the shortened version were shown to be reliable and valid at assessing a range of cognitive and behavioural responses to symptoms, highlighting the multi-symptom, transdiagnostic properties of this questionnaire. Further research is necessary to determine the test–retest reliability and sensitivity to change of the CBRQ and CBRQ-SF and a thorough evaluation of the content validity of the items.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)619-638
Number of pages20
JournalBritish Journal of Health Psychology
Volume28
Issue number2
Early online date23 Jan 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 10 Apr 2023

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