Measurement adequacy of the CES-D among a sample of older African-Americans

Psychiatry Res. 2002 Jan 31;109(1):61-9. doi: 10.1016/s0165-1781(01)00360-2.


This manuscript examines the measurement adequacy of the CES-D when applied in older African-Americans (n=227). The response distribution was skewed towards less symptomatology on all items, and the internal consistency of the CES-D was acceptable (alpha=0.86). An exploratory factor analysis revealed four underlying factors of depressive symptomatology: (1) depressive/somatic; (2) positive; (3) interpersonal; and (4) social well-being. The primary factor was a combination of depression and somatic symptoms, a commonly reported uni-dimensional factor among ethnic groups. Additionally, a fourth factor emerged that has not previously been identified, labeled 'social well-being'. This factor consisted of three items that may tap into the social interactions of the elderly: appetite, hopeful, and talk. These findings contribute to the growing body of evidence on the unique measurement properties of the CES-D across diverse populations.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Black or African American / psychology
  • Black or African American / statistics & numerical data*
  • Depressive Disorder / diagnosis*
  • Depressive Disorder / epidemiology
  • Depressive Disorder / psychology
  • Factor Analysis, Statistical
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Somatoform Disorders / epidemiology
  • Somatoform Disorders / psychology
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*