ATS American Thoracic Society
Recent Abstracts

Airways Questionnaire

Name of Questionnaire

Airways Questionnaire (AQ-20; AQ-30)


A short disease-specific instrument designed to measure health status in asthma.


Barley EA, Quirk FH and Jones PW


Professor P.W. Jones
Division of Physiological Medicine
St. George's Hospital Medical School
Cranmer Terrace, London
SW17 0RE


Not reported

Cost & availability

Permission must be obtained from the authors.



Time to complete

2.5 ± 0.9 minutes

Number of items

20 (in the AQ20) or 30 (in the AQ30)

Domains & categories (#)

4 sections and a total score

Name of categories/domains

Activities; Symptoms; Emotional functioning; and Environmental stimuli.

Scaling of items



Continuous Scale


a. Test-Retest/Reproducibility: Reported 1
b. Internal Consistency: Reported 1


The AQ20 and AQ30 correlated well with the St. George Respiratory Questionnaire (SGRQ) and the Asthma Quality of Life Questionnaire (AQLQ). The AQ 20/30 was correlated with PEFR (am and pm) but not FEV1 or FVC. The AQ 20/30 correlated with daily PERF variation, although was not significant in the case of the AQ 30. Correlations with the diary card measures of Asthma Severity and Asthma Impact were the same at 0.57 and 0.64, respectively. 54 patients reported sleep disturbances. Both questionnaires were correlated with to the same extent with sleep disturbance. Total scores for the SGRQ and AQLQ correlated with sleep disturbance at a similar level. The correlation of the AQ 20 and AQ 30 with bronchodilator use was 0.34 and 0.32, respectively (p < 0.01). The AQ 20/30 correlated better with the total scores of the SGRQ and AQLQ than with their component scores. The weakest correlations were with the AQLQ Emotional Functioning and Environmental Stimuli components. Scores for the AQ20/30 tended to indicate poorer health when compared to the SGRQ and AQLQ. There was no advantage of the AQ30 over the AQ20.


After a 6-month follow-up, AQ20 data derived from 109 asthma patients showed that the instrument was highly responsive; however a ceiling effect was prominent 4

Research Use

Reported 1

Clinical Use

Not reported.


Original: English

Translations: Not reported


  1. Quirk FH, Jones PW. Back to basics: How many items can adequately represent health-related quality of life in airways disease? Eur Respir Rev. 1997; 7:50-52.
  2. Quirk FH, Jones PW. Repeatability of two new short airways questionnaires. Thorax. 1994; 49:1075.
  3. Barley EA, Quirk FH, Jones PW. Asthma health status measurement in clinical practice: Validity of a new short and simple instrument. Respiratory Medicine. 1998; 92; 1207-1214.
  4. Oga T, Nishimura K, Tsukino M, Sato S, Hajiro T, Mishima M. Comparison of the responsiveness of different disease-specific health status measures in patients with asthma. Chest. 2002; 122: 1228-1233.
  5. Alemayehu B, Aubert RE, Feifer RA, Paul LD. Comparative analysis of two quality-of-life instruments for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Value in Health 2002; 5(5):437-442.

Date of information

June 1998

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