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Psychol Assess. 2010 Sep;22(3):702-10. doi: 10.1037/a0019915.

Screening for depressive disorders using the Mood and Anxiety Symptoms Questionnaire Anhedonic Depression Scale: a receiver-operating characteristic analysis.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 603 East Daniel Street, Champaign, IL 61820, USA. kbredem2@uiuc.edu


The present study examined the utility of the anhedonic depression scale from the Mood and Anxiety Symptoms Questionnaire (MASQ-AD scale) as a way to screen for depressive disorders. Using receiver-operating characteristic analysis, we examined the sensitivity and specificity of the full 22-item MASQ-AD scale, as well as the 8- and 14-item subscales, in relation to both current and lifetime Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4th ed.) depressive disorder diagnoses in two nonpatient samples. As a means of comparison, the sensitivity and specificity of a measure of a relevant personality dimension, Neuroticism, was also examined. Results from both samples support the clinical utility of the MASQ-AD scale as a means of screening for depressive disorders. Findings were strongest for the MASQ-AD 8-item subscale and when predicting current depression status. Furthermore, the MASQ-AD 8-item subscale outperformed the Neuroticism measure under certain conditions. The overall usefulness of the MASQ-AD scale as a screening device is discussed, as are possible cutoff scores for use in research.

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