Readability Level of Spanish-Language Patient-Reported Outcome Measures in Audiology and Otolaryngology Purpose The purpose of this study was to examine the readability level of the Spanish versions of several audiology- and otolaryngology-related patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) and include a readability analysis of 2 translation approaches when available—the published version and a “functionalist” version—using a team-based collaborative approach including community members. ... Research Article
Research Article  |   September 18, 2017
Readability Level of Spanish-Language Patient-Reported Outcome Measures in Audiology and Otolaryngology
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Laura Coco
    Department of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences, University of Arizona, Tucson
  • Sonia Colina
    Department of Spanish and Portuguese, University of Arizona, Tucson
  • Samuel R. Atcherson
    Department of Audiology and Speech Pathology, University of Arkansas at Little Rock
    University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock
  • Nicole Marrone
    Department of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences, University of Arizona, Tucson
  • Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.
    Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication. ×
  • Correspondence to Nicole Marrone: nmarrone@email.arizona.edu
  • Editor-in-Chief: Sumitrajit Dhar
    Editor-in-Chief: Sumitrajit Dhar×
  • Editor: Lauren Calandruccio
    Editor: Lauren Calandruccio×
Article Information
Hearing Disorders / Cultural & Linguistic Diversity / Research Issues, Methods & Evidence-Based Practice / Research Articles
Research Article   |   September 18, 2017
Readability Level of Spanish-Language Patient-Reported Outcome Measures in Audiology and Otolaryngology
American Journal of Audiology, September 2017, Vol. 26, 309-317. doi:10.1044/2017_AJA-17-0018
History: Received February 16, 2017 , Revised May 3, 2017 , Accepted May 8, 2017
 
American Journal of Audiology, September 2017, Vol. 26, 309-317. doi:10.1044/2017_AJA-17-0018
History: Received February 16, 2017; Revised May 3, 2017; Accepted May 8, 2017

Purpose The purpose of this study was to examine the readability level of the Spanish versions of several audiology- and otolaryngology-related patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) and include a readability analysis of 2 translation approaches when available—the published version and a “functionalist” version—using a team-based collaborative approach including community members.

Method Readability levels were calculated using the Fry Graph adapted for Spanish, as well as the Fernandez-Huerta and the Spaulding formulae for several commonly used audiology- and otolaryngology-related PROMs.

Results Readability calculations agreed with previous studies analyzing audiology-related PROMs in English and demonstrated many Spanish-language PROMs were beyond the 5th grade reading level suggested for health-related materials written for the average population. In addition, the functionalist versions of the PROMs yielded lower grade-level (improved) readability levels than the published versions.

Conclusion Our results suggest many of the Spanish-language PROMs evaluated here are beyond the recommended readability levels and may be influenced by the approach to translation. Moreover, improved readability may be possible using a functionalist approach to translation. Future analysis of the suitability of outcome measures and the quality of their translations should move beyond readability and include an evaluation of the individual's comprehension of the written text.

Acknowledgments
Research in this publication was supported by the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders under Award Number R21/R33 DC013681 (PI: N.M.). The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health. The authors thank Paulina Bueno and Dr. Joanna Fountain for their assistance in scoring the readability calculations and Diane Cheek for her research assistance.
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