Assessing addiction: concepts and instruments

Addict Sci Clin Pract. 2007 Dec;4(1):19-31. doi: 10.1151/ascp074119.


Efficient, organized assessment of substance use disorders is essential for clinical research, treatment planning, and referral to adjunctive services. In this article, we discuss the basic concepts of formalized assessment for substance abuse and addiction, as established by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th Edition, Text Revision, and describe six widely used structured assessment instruments. Our aim is to help researchers and clinical programs identify the instruments that best suit their particular situations and purposes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Alcoholism / diagnosis
  • Alcoholism / rehabilitation
  • Anxiety Disorders / diagnosis
  • Anxiety Disorders / rehabilitation
  • Comorbidity
  • Depressive Disorder, Major / diagnosis
  • Depressive Disorder, Major / rehabilitation
  • Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
  • Humans
  • Illicit Drugs*
  • Interview, Psychological*
  • Personality Assessment / statistics & numerical data*
  • Psychometrics
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Substance-Related Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Substance-Related Disorders / rehabilitation


  • Illicit Drugs