A Psychometric Comparison of the Clinical Assessment Interview for Negative Symptoms and the Brief Negative Symptom Scale.Schizophr Bull 2016; 42(6):1384-1394SB
In 2005, the National Institute of Mental Health held a consensus development conference on negative symptoms of schizophrenia. Among the important conclusions of this meeting were that there are at least 5 commonly accepted domains of negative symptoms (blunted affect, alogia, avolition, anhedonia, asociality) and that new rating scales were needed to adequately assess these constructs. Two next-generation negative symptom scales resulted from this meeting: the Brief Negative Symptom Scale (BNSS) and Clinical Assessment Interview for Negative Symptoms (CAINS). Both measures are becoming widely used and studies have demonstrated good psychometric properties for each scale. The current study provides the first direct psychometric comparison of these scales. Participants included 65 outpatients diagnosed with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder who completed clinical interviews, questionnaires, and neuropsychological testing. Separate raters completed the BNSS and CAINS within the same week. Results indicated that both measures had good internal consistency, convergent validity, and discriminant validity. High correspondence was observed between CAINS and BNSS blunted affect and alogia items. Moderate convergence occurred for avolition and asociality items, and low convergence was seen among anhedonia items. Findings suggest that both scales have good psychometric properties, but that there are important distinctions among the items related to motivation and pleasure.