A psychometric evaluation of the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale during pregnancy

Psychol Health Med. 2003 Feb 1;8(1):89-103. doi: 10.1080/1354850021000059296.


The utility of the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) as a screening instrument for anxiety and depression during pregnancy was investigated. A maximum likelihood factor analysis was conducted on the HADS to determine its psychometric properties and utility in 100 women from two culturally diverse populations (UK and Uzbekistan) at 12-weeks and 34-weeks pregnancy. The findings suggest that the HADS lacks the internal reliability requirements of a clinical assessment tool in this population. There was little evidence found to suggest that the HADS measures two dimensions of anxiety and depression consistently and reliably. The findings from this study suggest that the HADS could not be recommended as a clinical screening tool for anxiety and depression in pregnant women. Further research in this area is both desirable and required.