Background: Benzodiazepine (BZD) dependence is a condition generally circumscribed to a therapeutic framework. Up to 44% of chronic users become dependent. The widespread use of BZD in psychiatry requires the evaluation of psychometric properties of self-reported instruments to characterize this phenomenon.
Objective: To examine the reliability, construct and criterion validity of the Benzodiazepine Dependence Questionnaire (BDEPQ) in Mexican psychiatric patients.
Method: Patients were included if they met DSM-IV criteria for any Axis I disorder and were BZD users. A total of 150 patients were recruited. Diagnoses were made with the SCID-I and BZD dependence was determined with an adaptation of the substance dependence section of the SCID-I. All patients answered the BDEPQ.
Results: Almost half of the patients met criteria for BZD dependence. The BDEPQ showed adequate factor loadings with strong alpha values for the subscales and total score. A cut-off value of 23 reached the most stable sensitivity and specificity values.
Conclusions: Psychometric properties of the BDEPQ in Mexican psychiatric patients support its utility as a tool for the clinical work and research as it shows to be a useful instrument for the early recognition of BZD dependence in clinical populations.
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