Comparing the Chinese versions of two knee-specific questionnaires (IKDC and KOOS): reliability, validity, and responsiveness

Chien Chih Huang, Wen Shiang Chen, Mei Wun Tsai, Wendy Tzyy Jiuan Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: The International Knee Documentation Committee Subjective Knee Form (IKDC) and the Knee Injury and Osteoarthritis Outcome Score (KOOS) are knee-specific questionnaires that have been widely used and translated into numerous languages. However, the differences in the psychometric properties between the Chinese IKDC and KOOS remain unclear. The purpose of this study was to conduct a cross-cultural adaptation of the Chinese IKDC and Chinese KOOS and to compare the psychometric properties of these two measures in patients with various knee injuries from the acute stage up to 12 weeks after receiving treatment.

METHODS: The original IKDC and KOOS were translated into Chinese based on the guidelines of cross-cultural adaptation and translation protocols. One hundred and seventy-three patients with various knee injuries were recruited in this study and completed both Chinese IKDC and Chinese KOOS as well as a generic health status questionnaire (Chinese Short Form-36 [SF-36]). The reliability, internal consistency, content validity, convergent and divergent validity and responsiveness of both IKDC and KOOS were assessed with appropriate indices.

RESULTS: The Chinese IKDC showed excellent reliability (ICC = 0.97) and strong internal consistency (Cronbach alpha = 0.87). The Chinese KOOS also presented good reliability with ICCs ranging from 0.89 to 0.95 and internal consistency (Cronbach alpha coefficients ranging from 0.76 to 0.97). The content validity of these two questionnaires were excellent, yielding no floor or ceiling effects. Both the Chinese IKDC and KOOS were highly associated with the physical component summary (PCS) score and weakly related to the mental component summary (MCS) score of the SF-36. Responsiveness to change was large (effect size =0.95) for the Chinese IKDC and moderate (effect sizes = 0.49~0.60) at 12-week after physical therapy.

CONCLUSION: Both the Chinese IKDC and KOOS demonstrated good psychometric properties. However, the Chinese IKDC was more sensitive to changes over a period of 2, 4, 8, 12 weeks of physical therapy than the Chinese KOOS. The ROC analyses revealed a value of area under the curve (0.83 for the Chinese IKDC and 0.67-0.79 for the subscales of Chinese KOOS). Minimal clinically important difference values were 9.8 for the Chinese IKDC and 0.79, 0.76, 0.76, 0.76, 0.67 for the Symptoms, Pain, Activities of Daily Living, Sport/Recreation, and Quality of Life subscales of Chinese KOOS, respectively. The current study provides information for clinicians and researchers to use these appraisal tools for Chinese-speaking patients with various knee disorders.

Original languageEnglish
Article number238
Pages (from-to)238
Number of pages1
JournalHealth and Quality of Life Outcomes
Issue number1
StatePublished - 6 Dec 2017


  • Cross-cultural adaptation
  • International knee documentation committee (IKDC)
  • Patient-reported outcome measurement
  • Psychometric properties
  • The knee injury and osteoarthritis outcome score (KOOS)


Dive into the research topics of 'Comparing the Chinese versions of two knee-specific questionnaires (IKDC and KOOS): reliability, validity, and responsiveness'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this