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The Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale:  I. Development, Use, and Reliability

Wayne K. Goodman, MD; Lawrence H. Price, MD; Steven A. Rasmussen, MD; Carolyn Mazure, PhD; Roberta L. Fleischmann, RN, BSN; Candy L. Hill, MS; George R. Heninger, MD; Dennis S. Charney, MD
Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1989;46(11):1006-1011. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1989.01810110048007.
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• The Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale was designed to remedy the problems of existing rating scales by providing a specific measure of the severity of symptoms of obsessivecompulsive disorder that is not influenced by the type of obsessions or compulsions present. The scale is a clinician-rated, 10-item scale, each item rated from 0 (no symptoms) to 4 (extreme symptoms) (total range, 0 to 40), with separate subtotals for severity of obsessions and compulsions. In a study involving four raters and 40 patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder at various stages of treatment, interrater reliability for the total Yale-Brown Scale score and each of the 10 individual items was excellent, with a high degree of internal consistency among all item scores demonstrated with Cronbach's α coefficient. Based on pretreatment assessment of 42 patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder, each item was frequently endorsed and measured across a range of severity. These findings suggest that the Yale-Brown Scale is a reliable instrument for measuring the severity of illness in patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder with a range of severity and types of obsessive-compulsive symptoms.

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