Obtaining a diagnosis is an essential and integral part of physical and rehabilitation medicine (PRM) in practice and research. Standardized psychometric properties are required of any classifications, diagnostic criteria and diagnostic rules used. Physicians and researchers, inPRM, need to understand these properties to determine the accuracy and consistency of their diagnosis. Although chronic MSK pain disorders are among the highly prevalent disorders seen in PRM, limitations regarding existing diagnostic criteria for chronic MSK pain disorders still exist. Hence, the quest for developing diagnostic tools for chronic MSK pain that align with the standard properties remains open. are discussed with an example for existing diagnostic criteria for fibromyalgia. This paper primarily aims to provide an overview of standard psychometric properties. A secondary aim is to critically appraise the tools currently used to diagnose chronic musculoskeletal (MSK) pain disorders. The challenges and limitations of existing diagnostic tools are discussed. Potential approacheson how to improve the conceptualization of the construct of MSK pain disorders are also discussed. Adopting a network perspective, for example, can better constitute the disease instead of a single known underlying etiology for persistent or recurrent pain symptoms.
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