Psychometric properties and validity of Beck Depression Inventory II in multiple sclerosis

R. Sacco, G. Santangelo, S. Stamenova, A. Bisecco, S. Bonavita, L. Lavorgna, Luigi Trojano, A. D'Ambrosio, G. Tedeschi, A. Gallo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background and purpose: Depression is the most common psychiatric disorder in multiple sclerosis (MS). Self-report depression scales are frequently used as screening, diagnostic and grading instruments. This study investigated the psychometric properties of the Beck Depression Inventory second edition (BDI-II) for assessing depressive disorders in a sample of Italian MS patients. Methods: The sample included 141 consecutive non-demented MS patients who completed the BDI-II and the Chicago Multiscale Depression Inventory (CMDI). MS patients also completed a clinical interview, a neurological/neuropsychological examination and a Fatigue Severity Score (FSS) questionnaire in order to assess divergent validity. Results: The BDI-II showed good internal consistency (Cronbach's alpha 0.89) and good convergent and divergent validity. With respect to CMDI serving as the 'gold standard', the receiver operating characteristic curve revealed that BDI-II is an adequate diagnostic measure and that the optimum total cut-off score was 18.5. Such score identified clinically relevant depressive symptoms in 25.5% of our MS sample. Conclusions: The BDI-II is a simple, reliable and valid tool for detecting and grading depressive symptoms in Italian MS patients.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Journal of Neurology
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Beck Depression Inventory II
  • Chicago Multiscale Depression Inventory
  • Depression
  • Multiple sclerosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neurology


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