Due to the international nature of many clinical studies and trials it is often necessary to produce several language versions of specific measures. While it is generally acknowledged that it is necessary to produce versions that are conceptually equivalent, the best method of achieving this is more controversial. It is commonly stated that there is a gold-standard method, which involves forward and backward translation. However, no evidence has been presented to support this view. This paper argues that the "gold-standard" method is difficult to support and describes an alternative method involving dual translation panels that has been used in the production of all adaptations of needs-based quality of life instruments.
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