Re-validation and shortening of the functional assessment of anorexia/cachexia therapy (FAACT) questionnaire

J. M. Ribaudo, David Cella*, E. A. Hahn, S. R. Lloyd, N. S. Tchekmedyian, J. Von Roenn, W. T. Leslie

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

143 Scopus citations


Purpose: The original Functional Assessment of Anorexia/Cachexia Therapy (FAACT) was designed to measure general aspects of quality of life (QOL) as well as specific anorexia/cachexia-related concerns. Our primary purpose was to reduce the number of anorexia/cachexia subscale items in a manner that either retains or improves reliability, validity and precision. Methods: The FAACT was administered using an interactive computer program that allowed immediate entry of the data. A total of 213 patients were recruited. Results: A combined empirical and conceptual approach led to the reduction of the anorexia/ cachexia subscale (A/CS) from 18 to 12 items. A 26-item trial outcome index (TOI) combining physical well-being (PWB), functional well-being (FWB), and the A/CS-12 was highly reliable and sensitive to change in performance status rating (PSR). We found that PWB, FWB, and A/CS-12 subscales performed differently. Specifically, PWB and FWB scores decreased in patients whose (PSR) worsened. However, although A/CS-12 scores were responsive to change in PSR over time, average A/CS-12 scores of all patients, even those whose PSR worsened, improved over the course of treatment. Conclusions: Elimination of six items from the anorexia/cachexia subscale of the FAACT was accomplished without loss of internal consistency or sensitivity to change in performance status. The A/CS-12 subscale provides unique, important information not captured by a generic chronic illness questionnaire.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1137-1146
Number of pages10
JournalQuality of Life Research
Issue number10
StatePublished - 2000


  • Anorexia/cachexia
  • Quality of life
  • Scale validation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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