ARTICLES: PDF OnlyOutcome Measures to Quantify the Effects of Physical Therapy for People with Multiple SclerosisFreeman, Jennifer PhD, BAppSc (Physio)1; Morris, Meg PhD, BAppSc (Physio)2; Davidson, Megan BAppSc (Physio)3; Dodd, Karen PhD, BAppSc (Physio)3Author Information 1Senior Lecturer, Institute of Health, Plymouth University, Devon, England; Institute of Neurology, London, England 2Professor of Physiotherapy, La Trobe University, 3086 Australia 3School of Physiotherapy, La Trobe University, 3086 Australia Neurology Report: Volume 26 - Issue 3 - p 139-144 Free Abstract The aims of this article are to: (1) introduce the idea of incorporating the new World Health Organization International Classification of Functioning and Disability (ICF) as one of the range of possible measures for quantifying outcome and classifying disability in people with multiple sclerosis (MS); and (2) describe some of the strengths, limitations, and psychometric properties of tools frequently used by physical therapists to measure outcome in people with MS. When selecting an appropriate outcome measurement tool, physical therapists need to clearly identify the questions they wish to answer, as well as which dimensions of health or function require assessment. The ICF provides a useful framework for classifying and measuring impairment, activity limitation, and participation restriction. If, however, the aim is to quantify the effects of therapy over short periods of time in an individual with MS, then impairment measures or select activity scales might best discriminate change. If the aim is to measure the outcome of a physical therapy service or the overall effects of physical therapy on groups of patients, then generic scales that have already been tested for psychometric properties, such as the Expanded Disability Status Scale or Functional Independence MeasureTM, may be more suitable. While physical therapists are adept at measuring outcomes in the impairment and activity limitation domains, there are several reasons for measuring participation restriction when quantifying therapy outcomes in people with MS. © 2002 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.