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Department of Family Medicine

Diabetes Treatment Satisfaction Questionnaire


Bradley C. (1994)

Background and Development:

The DTSQ consists of two separate surveys. The original DTSQs (status version) was designed to make the initial assessment of total diabetes treatment satisfaction, treatment satisfaction in specific areas, and perceived frequencies of hyperglycemia and hypoglycemia. Each of the 8 items are scored on a scale of 0-6. The DTSQs was originally developed in the early 1980s. It has been used extensively in clinical trials and in routine clinical monitoring and has been translated into more than 40 languages.

The change version (DTSQc) has the same 8 items as the status version, but reworded slightly to measure the change in satisfaction rather than absolute satisfaction. It was developed to overcome ceiling effects in the status version. Each item is scored on a scale of -3 to +3. The DTSQc is available in over 30 languages.

The DTSQ has been modified to measure treatment satisfaction for other conditions including HIV, renal failure, diabetic retinopathy, and genital herpes (References).

Assessment in Elderly Populations:

The DTSQ has been tested in an elderly population (Petterson et al. 1998) and found to be a good measure of treatment satisfaction.

Assessment in Minority Populations:

The DTSQ has not been specifically tested in a minority population.

Subsequent Studies:

Numerous studies have used the DTSQ to assess treatment satisfaction. The numerous translations have been independently assessed for validity and reliability (References).

Design Strengths and Weaknesses:

To best assess a patient's satisfaction with treatment the initial screening should use the DTSQs version. Subsequent assessments should use the DTSQc version in order to assess changes in satisfaction over time or due to changes in treatment. While the DTSQc will measure the increase or decrease in patient satisfaction, it cannot measure the absolute level of satisfaction. Use of the DTSQs alone to measure changes in treatment satisfaction is problematic because of a ceiling effect. Most patients are satisfied with their treatment so scores generally are high with little room for change.

Contact Information:

The author emphasizes the importance of obtaining a license/permission to use the instruments and ensuring that the authorised version is used. Even though there is no charge for non-commercial users, the use of out of date pirate versions that are poorly translated can be avoided because the author can provide authorised linguistically validated translations free of charge. More information can be obtained from:

Dr. Clare Bradley (
Health Psychology Research,
Department of Psychology,
Royal Holloway, University of London,
Egham, Surrey, TW20 0EX UK

The reserach team is currently building a web site ( which will present the questionnaires and provide an on line licensing process for non-commercial agreements. This site will also contain information about other measurement tools which this group is developing.


The author has provided an extensive list of references for the DTSQ.

Bradley C. (1994) Diabetes treatment satisfaction questionnaire. in: Handbook of Psychology and Diabetes, Bradley C. (ed.), Chur, Switzerland: Harwood Academic Publishers.

Petterson T., L. Pauline, S. Hollis, B. Young, P. Newton, and T. Dornan (1998) Well-being and treatment satisfaction in older people with diabetes. Diabetes Care 31(6) 930-935.


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