Validation of Parkinson's Disease-Related Questionnaires in South Africa

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BACKGROUND: There are very few epidemiological studies investigating Parkinson's disease (PD) in Africa. The hundreds of local languages and dialects make traditional screening and clinical evaluation tools difficult to use. OBJECTIVE: The objective of the study was to validate two commonly used PD questionnaires in an African population. METHODS: The PD Screening Questionnaire (PDSQ) and Parkinson's Disease Questionnaire (PDQ-39) were modified and translated into Afrikaans, Setswana, and isiZulu and administered to a sample of healthy local residents. We assessed the internal consistencies and cluster characteristics of the questionnaires, using a Cronbach's alpha test and exploratory factor analysis. The questionnaires were then administered to a population-based sample of 416 research participants. We evaluated the correlations between the questionnaires and both a timed motor task and the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale motor subsection 3 (UPDRS3), using locally weighted scatterplot smoothing (LOWESS) regression analysis and Spearman's rank correlation. RESULTS: Both questionnaires had high overall internal consistency (Cronbach's alpha = 0.86 and 0.95, respectively). The modified PDQ-39 had evidence of five subscales, with Factor 1 explaining 57% and Factor 2 explaining 14%, of the variance in responses. The PDSQ and PDQ-39 scores were correlated with the UPDRS3 score ( = 0.35, < 0.001; and  = 0.28, < 0.001, respectively). CONCLUSION: The translated PDSQ and PDQ-39 questionnaires demonstrated high internal consistency and correlations with clinical severity of parkinsonism and a timed motor task, suggesting that they are valid tools for field-based epidemiological studies.

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Parkinson's disease





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