Protocol - Disability Index

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This section will be completed when reviewed by an Expert Review Panel.


Publicly available


The Oswestry Disability Index (ODI ©) version 2.1a is a 10-item proprietary self-administered questionnaire that asks questions regarding how an individual’s back (or leg) trouble affects the ability to perform routine daily activities.


Jeremy Fairbank is the owner of the Oswestry Disability Index (ODI ©) and version 2.1a of the instrument is available from the PROQOLID database (www.proqolid.org). Registration, as well as a user agreement, may be required for database access. Additionally, depending upon the type of research, a fee may be charged. The PROQOLID database was created by Mapi Research Trust, 2001-2014, All rights reserved.

Each item of the Oswestry Disability Index (ODI ©) focuses on a certain activity such as walking, lifting, and personal care (i.e., washing, dressing etc.). The respondent reports how their back (or leg) trouble has affected their ability to perform each of the activities on the day the ODI © is completed.

Personnel and Training Required

The interviewer should be trained and qualified to conduct personal interviews with individuals from the general population.

Equipment Needs



Requirement CategoryRequired
Average time of greater than 15 minutes in an unaffected individualNo
Major equipmentNo
Specialized requirements for biospecimen collectionNo
Specialized trainingNo

Mode of Administration


Life Stage:


Specific Instructions:

The Oswestry Disability Index (ODI ©) is a proprietary instrument and is available from the PROQOLID database.

Research Domain Information

Release Date:

April 30, 2015


This index is used to assess an individual’s ability to perform routine, daily activities.


This measure can be used to investigate the impact of having a disability on an individual’s daily activities and quality of life.

Selection Rationale

The Rare Genetic Conditions Working Group selected the Oswestry Disability Index (ODI ©) because it has high reproducibility, is widely used, has low participant and provider burden, and addresses pain and scoliosis.




Common Data Elements (CDE)Disability Index Value4798044CDE Browser

Process and Review

This section will be completed when reviewed by an Expert Review Panel.


Fairbank, J. C., & Pynsent, P. B. (2000). The Oswestry Disability Index. Spine (Phila Pa 1976), 25(22), 2940-2952.

General References

Baker, D. J., Pynsent, P. B. & Fairbank, JCT (1989). The Oswestry Disability Index revisited. In Roland Jenner, Jr. (Ed.), Back pain: New approaches to rehabilitation and education (pp. 174-186). Manchester: Manchester University Press.

Carreon, L. Y., Glassman, S. D., & Howard, J. (2008). Fusion and nonsurgical treatment for symptomatic lumbar degenerative disease: A systematic review of Oswestry Disability Index and MOS Short Form-36 outcomes. Spine Journal, 8(5), 747-755.

Fairbank, J. C. (2014). Why are there different versions of the Oswestry Disability Index? Journal of Neurosurgery. Spine, 20(1), 83-86.

Fairbank, J. C. T., Couper, J., Davies, J. B., & O’Brien, J. P. (1980). The Oswestry Low Back Pain Disability Questionnaire. Physiotherapy, 66, 271-273.

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