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Item Reduction, Psychometric And Biometric Properties Of The Italian Version Of The Body Perception Questionnaire—Short Form (BPQ-SF): The BPQ-22

Andrea Poli, Angelo Giovanni Icro Maremmani, Carlo Chiorri, Gian-Paolo Mazzoni, Graziella Orrù, Jacek Kolacz, Stephen W. Porges, Ciro Conversano, Angelo Gemignani, Mario Miccoli

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Body awareness disorders and reactivity are mentioned across a range of clinical problems. Constitutional differences in the control of the bodily state are thought to generate a vulnerability to psychological symptoms. Autonomic nervous system dysfunctions have been associated with anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress. Though interoception may be a transdiagnostic mechanism promoting the improvement of clinical symptomatology, few psychometrically sound, symptom-independent, self-report measures, informed by brain–body circuits, are available for research and clinical use. We validated the Italian version of the body perception questionnaire (BPQ)—short form and found that response categories could be collapsed from five to three and that the questionnaire retained a three-factor structure with items reduced from 46 to 22 (BPQ-22). The first factor was loaded by body awareness items; the second factor comprised some items from the body awareness scale and some from the subdiaphragmatic reactivity scale (but all related to bloating and digestive issues), and the third factor by supradiaphragmatic reactivity items. The BPQ-22 had sound psychometric properties, good convergent and discriminant validity and test–retest reliability and could be used in clinical and research settings in which the body perception assessment is of interest. Psychometric findings in light of the polyvagal theory are discussed.