Development and Initial Validation of the Medical Fear Survey-Short Version

Bunmi O. Olatunji, Chad Ebesutani, Craig N. Sawchuk, Dean McKay, Jeffrey M. Lohr, Ronald A. Kleinknecht

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Scopus citations

Abstract

The present investigation employs item response theory (IRT) to develop an abbreviated Medical Fear Survey (MFS). Application of IRT analyses in Study 1 (n = 931) to the original 50-item MFS resulted in a 25-item shortened version. Examination of the location parameters also resulted in a reduction of the Likert-type scaling of the MFS by removing the last response category ("Terror"). The five subscales of the original MFS were highly correlated with those of the MFS-short version. The short version also displayed comparable convergent and discriminant validity with the original MFS in relation to measures of fear, disgust, and anxiety. Confirmatory factor analysis in Study 2 revealed that the five-factor structure of the MFS-short form fit the data well in U.S. (n = 283) and Dutch (n = 258) samples. The short form also had comparable convergent and discriminant validity with the original MFS in relation to domains of disgust in both samples. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis in Study 3 demonstrated that the subscales of the short version were comparable with the original MFS in classifying participants high (n = 40) and low (n = 40) in blood/injection phobia. Last, structural equation modeling in Study 4 (n = 113) revealed that the MFS-short form demonstrated excellent convergent/discriminant validity with strong associations with injection fear and no association with spider fear. These findings suggest that the MFS-short form has considerable strengths, including decreased assessment time, while retaining sound psychometric properties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)318-336
Number of pages19
JournalAssessment
Volume19
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2012

Keywords

  • MFS
  • disgust
  • item response theory
  • medical fear

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Applied Psychology

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    Olatunji, B. O., Ebesutani, C., Sawchuk, C. N., McKay, D., Lohr, J. M., & Kleinknecht, R. A. (2012). Development and Initial Validation of the Medical Fear Survey-Short Version. Assessment, 19(3), 318-336. https://doi.org/10.1177/1073191111415368