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J Affect Disord. 2011 Dec;135(1-3):1-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jad.2011.02.012. Epub 2011 Mar 21.

Measuring catatonia: a systematic review of rating scales.

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  • 1ECT Department, University Psychiatric Center - Catholic University Leuven, Campus Kortenberg, Leuvensesteenweg 517, 3070 Kortenberg, Belgium. pascal.sienaert@uc-kortenberg.be



Despite a growing scientific and clinical interest in catatonia, its precise definition remains debated.


The aim of this study was to offer a systematic review of the different rating scales that have been developed to assess catatonia in clinical practice.


A Medline-search was performed, up to December 2010.


Seven catatonia rating scales were retrieved: the Modified Rogers Scale, the Rogers Catatonia Scale, the Bush-Francis Catatonia Rating Scale (BFCRS), and its revision, the Northoff Catatonia Rating Scale (NCRS), the Braunig Catatonia Rating Scale (BCRS), and the Kanner Scale.


Several catatonia rating scales are proposed to detect the catatonic syndrome and to evaluate treatment response. BFCRS, NCRS and BCRS are reliable for use in variable populations in which catatonia is prevalent. The BFCRS is preferred for routine use, because of its validity and reliability, and its ease of administration.

Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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