Examination of the hamilton scales in assessment of anxious older adults: A replication and extension


This study examined the original and reconstructed Hamilton scales in the assessment of anxiety and depression in a sample of older adults diagnosed with GAD (n = 82). Internal consistency of all scales appeared adequate. Results indicated improved construct validity with the reconstructed scales, which demonstrated reduced shared variance. However, construct validity examined through intercorrelations of the Hamilton scales with self-report measures of anxiety and depression was generally poor. Discriminant function analysis indicated that the reconstructed scales might have some clinical utility in differentiation of patients with and without coexistent depressive diagnosis (67% correct classification). In addition, two items from the Hamilton rating scale for depression (Work and Activities; Hopelessness) correctly classified patients with and without depression at a similar level as the Hamilton scale total scores (64-65% correct classification). These results suggest that the Work and Activities, and Hopelessness items may provide clinicians with useful screening questions for depression in anxious older adults. © 2001 Plenum Publishing Corporation.

Publication Title

Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment