High-quality clinical research incorporating standardized outcome assessments is necessary to advance the field of hand surgery. Although such research can be conducted with little direct cost, effectively answering clinical questions requires thoughtful study design. Relevant concepts to consider include sample size determination, study end points, data management, and choice of outcome measures. Provided the emphasis on, and proliferation of, patient-rated outcome measures, the clinician-researcher should consider the unique aspects of commonly referenced outcome measures when initiating an investigation.
- outcome measure