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Gen Hosp Psychiatry. 2006 Jan-Feb;28(1):55-8.

Validity and reliability of the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale in a hypertrophic cardiomyopathy clinic: the HADS in a cardiomyopathy population.

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  • 1Liaison Psychiatry, Clare House, St. George's Hospital and Medical School, Tooting Broadway, SW17 0QT, London, UK.



The purpose of this study is the validation of the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) in patients suffering from hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in an inner city teaching hospital. The secondary objective was to establish whether the use of the total HADS score to detect "caseness" is justified.


One hundred fifteen patients in a cardiac outpatient clinic completed the HADS, which was compared against the gold standard Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-III-R nonpatient version (SCID-np). Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves were created for the anxiety and depression subscales, as well as the total score, then sensitivity, specificity, likelihood ratios and positive and negative predictive values were calculated. Retest correlation was assessed at 2 weeks in 31 patients.


The depression subscale was highly sensitive (100%) when the cutoff score 8 was used; however, the corresponding specificity was poor (79%). Raising the cutoff to 10 improved specificity but compromised sensitivity. The anxiety subscale was performed similarly though with less accuracy. The total HADS score produced a poor ROC curve and performed best when the cutoff was 14.


The HADS performs well as a screening instrument for anxiety and depression in this population at the designed cutoff score 8. However, its use as a research instrument and the practice of using the total score to detect caseness are not supported by this study.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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