The psychometric properties of the hebrew version of the memorial symptom assessment scale (MSAS-Heb) in patients with breast cancer

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Context To date, no report of the psychometric properties of the Hebrew version of the Memorial Symptom Assessment Scale (MSAS-Heb) has been available, which may be a barrier to comprehensively assessing symptom frequency, severity, and distress in Israeli patients with cancer. Objectives This study aimed to translate the MSAS into Hebrew and to evaluate the psychometric properties in Israeli patients with cancer. Methods The original 32-item MSAS was translated into Hebrew using the forward and backward procedure, and administered to female patients with early stage breast cancer (stages I-IIIA) who had received adjuvant chemotherapy. In addition, patients completed a demographic questionnaire, the Lee Fatigue Scale, the Center for Epidemiological Studies-Depression Scale, the General Sleep Disturbance Scale, a numeric rating scale for pain intensity, the Multidimensional Quality of Life Scale-Cancer and the Karnofsky Performance Status Scale. Results A sample of 110 patients was recruited (mean age 45.5 ± 10.1 years). The most frequent symptoms were hair loss (96.4%), lack of energy (88.2%) and "I do not look like myself" (80.9%), and the most infrequent were vomiting (7.3%), problems with urination (10.9%), and shortness of breath (20.9%). Cronbach alpha coefficients for the MSAS-Heb subscales (i.e., physical, psychological and global distress index) ranged from 0.78 to 0.90. All MSAS-Heb subscales and all the other questionnaires used in this study were significantly correlated (P < 0.0001), with expected directions. Conclusion The MSAS-Heb is a valid and a reliable measure and should be a useful tool in the clinical arena and in future studies for evaluation of multiple symptoms in Israeli patients with cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)790-795
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Pain and Symptom Management
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Apr 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine.


  • Cancer
  • Memorial Symptom Assessment Scale
  • symptoms
  • validation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine
  • General Nursing


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