The Brief Fatigue Inventory (BFI) is used to rapidly assess the severity and impact of cancer-related fatigue. An increasing focus on cancer-related fatigue emphasized the need for sensitive tools to assess this most frequently reported symptom. The six interference items correlate with standard quality-of-life measures.
|BFI Fatigue Items||BFI Interference Items|
|Fatigue right now||General activity|
|Usual fatigue in last 24 hours||Mood|
|Worst fatigue in last 24 hours||Walking ability|
|Normal work (including housework)|
|Relations with other people|
|Enjoyment of life|
Order the BFI
- Purpose: To assess the severity of fatigue and the impact of fatigue on daily functioning
- Population: Patients with fatigue due to cancer and cancer treatment
- Assessment Areas: Severity of fatigue and the impact of fatigue on daily functioning in the past 24 hours
- Method: Self-report, interview with research staff, or interactive voice response system (IVR)
- Time required: Five minutes
- Scoring: A global fatigue score can be obtained by averaging all the items on the BFI
- Reliability: Cronbach alpha reliability ranges from 0.82 to 0.97
BFI Language Versions
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|Psychometrically and Linguistically Validated||Linguistically
Selected BFI References
Mendoza T, Wang XS, Cleeland CS, et al. The rapid assessment of fatigue severity in cancer patients: use of the Brief Fatigue Inventory. Cancer 85: 1186-1196, 1999.
Mendoza TR, Laudico AV, Wang XS, et al. Assessment of fatigue in cancer patients and community dwellers: validation study of the Filipino version of the Brief Fatigue Inventory. Oncology 79(1-2): 112-117, 2010.
Mystakidou K, Tsilika E, Parpa E, et al. Psychometric properties of the Brief Fatigue Inventory in Greek patients with advanced cancer. J Pain Symptom Manage 36(4): 367-373, 2008.
Lin CC, Chang AP, Chen ML, Cleeland CS, Mendoza TR, Wang XS. Validation of the Taiwanese Version of the Brief Fatigue Inventory. J Pain Symptom Manage 32(1): 52-59, 2006.
Yun YH, Wang XS, Lee JS, et al. Validation study of the Korean version of the Brief Fatigue Inventory. J Pain Symptom Manage 29(2): 165-172, 2005.
Wang XS, Hao XS, Wang Y, et al. Validation study of the Chinese version of the Brief Fatigue Inventory (BFI-C). J Pain Symptom Manage 27(4): 322-332, 2004.
Okuyama T, Wang XS, Akechi T, et al. Validation study of the Japanese version of the Brief Fatigue Inventory. J Pain Symptom Manage 25(2): 106-117, 2003.
Radbruch L, Sabatowski R, Elsner F, Everts J, Mendoza T, Cleeland C. Validation of the German version of the Brief Fatigue Inventory. J Pain Symptom Manage 25(5): 449-458, 2003.
Ionova TI, Novik AA, Manikhas GV, et al. Validation of Russian versions of Brief Pain Inventory (BPI-R), Brief Fatigue Inventory (BFI-R) and M. D. Anderson Symptom Inventory (MDASI-R) to assess symptoms in cancer patients [abstract]. International Society for Quality of Life Research 10th Annual Conference, Prague, Czech Republic, Nov 12-15, 2003. Qual Life Res 12(7): 798, 2003; 1561.
Valenzuela JO, Gning I, Irarrazaval ME, et al. Psychometric validation of the Spanish version of the Brief Fatigue Inventory [abstract]. The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Division of Internal Medicine Research Retreat, Houston TX, May 24, 2012.
Escalante CP, Meyers C, Reuben JM, et al. A randomized, double-blind, 2-period, placebo-controlled crossover trial of a sustained-release methylphenidate in the treatment of fatigue in cancer patients. Cancer J 20(1): 8-14, 1/2014.
Sternberg CN, Molina A, North S, et al. Effect of abiraterone acetate on fatigue in patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer after docetaxel chemotherapy. Ann Oncol 24(4): 1017-1025, 4/2013.
Shelton ML, Lee JQ, Morris GS, et al. A randomized control trial of a supervised versus a self-directed exercise program for allogeneic stem cell transplant patients. Psychooncology 18(4): 353-359, 2009.
Park HC, Janjan NA, Mendoza TR, et al. Temporal patterns of fatigue predict pathologic response in patients treated with preoperative chemoradiation therapy for rectal cancer. Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys 75(3): 775-781, 11/2009.
Yun YH, Lee MK, Chun HN, et al. Fatigue in the general Korean population: application and normative data of the Brief Fatigue Inventory. J Pain Symptom Manage 36(3): 259-267, 2008.
Chang YJ, Lee JS, Lee CG, et al. Assessment of clinical relevant fatigue level in cancer. Support Care Cancer 15(7): 891-896, 2007.
Anderson KO, Getto CJ, Mendoza TR, et al. Fatigue and sleep disturbance in patients with cancer, patients with clinical depression, and community-dwelling adults. J Pain Symptom Manage 25(4): 307-318, 2003.
Wang XS, Janjan NA, Guo H, et al. Fatigue during preoperative chemoradiation for resectable rectal cancer. Cancer 92(6 Suppl): 1725-1732, 2001.
Fatigue is the symptom most frequently reported by cancer patients. It is often the most distressing symptom and causes the most interference with daily living.
Tito R. Mendoza, Ph.D., M.Ed.
Associate Professor, Symptom Research