Development of the scale of psychosocial factors in food allergy (SPS-FA)

Aaron Cortes*, Angela Castillo, Alicia Sciaraffia

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Background: Food allergy (FA) is a growing condition among children and it's psychological impact over the patients and their caregivers is well known, establishing a vicious circle that perpetuates stress levels. However, psychosocial factors are not commonly included in allergy treatments. Based on the lack of evidence of records about a scale that indicates the level of interaction between biopsychosocial factors in the patient-caregivers dyad for FA, the present research aims to develop a scale with these characteristics as a helpful tool to achieve a more comprehensive system of health care. Methods: A preliminary 28-item scale was generated (sample N = 99). The scale was adjusted in contents and language after expert opinion and application on patients. A factor analysis was carried out selecting the items from the final scale. Results: The final 9-item scale included three areas: impact on quality of life, social impact and conflicts. The scale had a good internal consistency (Cronbach's α = 0.870) and correlated significantly with anxiety and depression measurements. Moreover, it was able to discriminate between study groups (members and non-members of peer support groups) and proved construct validity. Conclusions: The SPS-FA is the first scale for the assessment of the interaction of biopsychosocial factors on FA that includes the patient-caregiver dyad. Its application might be relevant for future research, and it can provide the clinician and the researcher with a solid tool to define which type of psychosocial support is required to provide a more comprehensive care in FA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)671-677
Number of pages7
JournalPediatric Allergy and Immunology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Nov 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Caregiver
  • Children
  • Food allergy
  • Psychosocial
  • Quality of life
  • Scale


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