Development and Validation of an Instrument for Measuring Attitudes and Beliefs about Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) Use among Cancer Patients

Department of Family Medicine and Community Health, University of Pennsylvania Health System, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.
Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine (Impact Factor: 1.88). 05/2012; 2012(13):798098. DOI: 10.1155/2012/798098
Source: PubMed


Despite cancer patients' extensive use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), validated instruments to measure attitudes, and beliefs predictive of CAM use are lacking. We aimed at developing and validating an instrument, attitudes and beliefs about CAM (ABCAM). The 15-item instrument was developed using the theory of planned behavior (TPB) as a framework. The literature review, qualitative interviews, expert content review, and cognitive interviews were used to develop the instrument, which was then administered to 317 outpatient oncology patients. The ABCAM was best represented as a 3-factor structure: expected benefits, perceived barriers, and subjective norms related to CAM use by cancer patients. These domains had Eigenvalues of 4.79, 2.37, and 1.43, and together explained over 57.2% of the variance. The 4-item expected benefits, 7-item perceived barriers, and 4-item subjective norms domain scores, each had an acceptable internal consistency (Cronbach's alpha) of 0.91, 0.76, and 0.75, respectively. As expected, CAM users had higher expected benefits, lower perceived barriers, and more positive subjective norms (all P < 0.001) than those who did not use CAM. Our study provides the initial evidence that the ABCAM instrument produced reliable and valid scores that measured attitudes and beliefs related to CAM use among cancer patients.

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