Which instrument is preferred? EQ-5D-3L or EQ-5D-5L?

There is growing evidence on the comparative psychometric performance of the EQ-5D-3L and EQ-5D-5L descriptive systems. A published systematic review by Buchholz and colleagues found that the 5-level version performed better, or at least the same in terms of measurement properties when compared to the 3-level version. This review supports the use of both the 3-level and 5-level versions in a broad range of patients, populations and countries/regions and shows that the EQ-5D-5L is to be preferred from a psychometric point of view. In addition, the EQ-5D-5L is accompanied by recent and up to date value sets, derived using the standardized EQ-VT protocol, for a large number of countries all around the world. These value sets are likely to be more appropriate compared to value sets that were derived before the introduction of the EQ-VT protocol.

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