Different ways to find your information are available:
1 Systematic reviews of outcome measurement instruments provide overviews of available instruments and their quality for measuring specific constructs in specific populations. Have a look in the COSMIN Database for Systematic Reviews to find out whether the review you need is available.
2 Core Outcome Sets (COS), including a recommendation on the outcome measurement instruments that should be used to measure the core outcomes, are great resources when searching for outcome measurement instruments. COSMIN recommends to measure and report the outcomes and outcome measurement instruments upon which consensus was reached in a specific field in your trial.
To find out if a Core Outcome Set (COS) for your specific field has been developed, have a look in the COS database that is maintained by the COMET initiative at www.comet-initiative.org. For clinical practice purposes, Standard Sets developed by ICHOM can be accessed, available at www.ichom.org.
3 PROMIS® (Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System) is a set of efficient, reliable, and valid patient-reported outcome measurement instruments for measuring aspects of physical, mental, and social health, that can universally be applied to adults and children with or without (chronic) diseases. This enhances standardization of measurements across populations. PROMIS instruments are developed based on modern psychometric techniques (Item Response Theory) and can be used for Computerized Adaptive Testing, whereby patients get more relevant and less questions to complete.
4 If no systematic review exists on the instruments measuring your construct of interest in your specific population, and no COS has yet been developed, we recommend you to perform a search in one or two databases to find studies on the quality of outcome measurement instruments measuring your construct of interest in the population of your interest. Therefore, you can use our search filter for finding studies on measurement properties in PubMed or EMBASE, and combine it with either term for the construct of interest, or the name and abbreviation of your instrument of interest. This saves you time finding the appropriate references in the online literature databases.
If you decide you want to conduct a systematic review on these findings yourself, please have a look at our page ‘I’m conducting a systematic review of outcome measurement instruments’.
5 Once you have decided which outcome measurement instrument you want to use, you need to obtain the actual instrument. Sometimes, it is published in a journal or website, but often only the condensed items are given without the specific instructions. Several websites or electronic databases provide an overview of existing outcome measurement instruments that are (freely) available.