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Protocol - General Distress Screener

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Description:

The K6 is a screening scale consisting of six questions to assess nonspecific psychological distress during the last 30 days. These questions ask about the respondent’s feelings and how these feelings have affected their normal activities and also about whether or not the respondent has sought professional help.

Protocol:

The following questions ask about how you have been feeling during the past 30 days. For each question, please indicate the answer that best describes how often you had this feeling.

1. During the past 30 days, about how often did you feel...

1.a. ...nervous?

[ ] 1 All of the time

[ ] 2 Most of the time

[ ] 3 Some of the time

[ ] 4 A little of the time

[ ] 5 None of the time

1.b. ...hopeless?

[ ] 1 All of the time

[ ] 2 Most of the time

[ ] 3 Some of the time

[ ] 4 A little of the time

[ ] 5 None of the time

1.c. ...restless or fidgety?

[ ] 1 All of the time

[ ] 2 Most of the time

[ ] 3 Some of the time

[ ] 4 A little of the time

[ ] 5 None of the time

1.d. ...so depressed that nothing could cheer you up?

[ ] 1 All of the time

[ ] 2 Most of the time

[ ] 3 Some of the time

[ ] 4 A little of the time

[ ] 5 None of the time

1.e. ...that everything was an effort?

[ ] 1 All of the time

[ ] 2 Most of the time

[ ] 3 Some of the time

[ ] 4 A little of the time

[ ] 5 None of the time

1.f. ...worthless?

[ ] 1 All of the time

[ ] 2 Most of the time

[ ] 3 Some of the time

[ ] 4 A little of the time

[ ] 5 None of the time

2. The last six questions asked about feelings that might have occurred during the past 30 days. Taking them altogether, did these feelings occur More often in the past 30 days than is usual for you, about the same as usual, or less often than usual? (If you never have any of these feelings, circle response option "4.")

[ ] 1 A lot (More often than usual)

[ ] 2 Some (More often than usual)

[ ] 3 A little (More often than usual)

[ ] 4 About the same as usual

[ ] 5 A little (Less often than usual)

[ ] 6 Some (Less often than usual)

[ ] 7 A lot (Less often than usual)

The next few questions are about how these feelings may have affected you in the past 30 days. You need not answer these questions if you answered "None of the time" to all of the six questions about your feelings.

3. During the past 30 days, how many days out of 30 were you totally unable to work or carry out your normal activities because of these feelings?

_______ (Number of days)

4. Not counting the days you reported in response to 3, how many days in the past 30 were you able to do only half or less of what you would normally have been able to do, because of these feelings?

_______ (Number of days)

5. During the past 30 days, how many times did you see a doctor or other health professional about these feelings?

_______ (Number of times)

6. During the past 30 days, how often have physical health problems been the main cause of these feelings?

[ ] 1 All of the time

[ ] 2 Most of the time

[ ] 3 Some of the time

[ ] 4 A little of the time

[ ] 5 None of the time

Scoring

Code question 1.a through 1.f 0-4 and sum to convert the K6 to a 0-24 scale. A cut point of 13 or greater is recommended to assess the prevalence of SMI (serious mental illness). Please see Kessler et al. (2002) for further information on scoring the K6.

Protocol Name from Source:

The K6

Availability:

Publicly available

Personnel and Training Required

None

Equipment Needs

None

Requirements
Requirement CategoryRequired
Major equipment No
Specialized training No
Specialized requirements for biospecimen collection No
Average time of greater than 15 minutes in an unaffected individual No
Mode of Administration

Self- or proxy-administered questionnaire

Life Stage:

Adult

Participants:

An individual aged 18 years or older.

Specific Instructions:

None

Selection Rationale

The K6 was vetted against similar protocols and selected because it is a validated, brief, self-report instrument that is low burden for investigators and respondents. Normative values are available from several large population-based studies of mental and physical disorders.

Language

Arabic, Dutch, English, German, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese, Portugese, Spanish

Standards
StandardNameIDSource
Common Data Elements (CDE) Person Distress Assessment Score 3075479 CDE Browser
Logical Observation Identifiers Names and Codes (LOINC) General distress screener proto 62746-3 LOINC
Process and Review

Expert Review Panel 4 (ERP 4) reviewed the measures in the Neurology, Psychiatric, and Psychosocial domains.

Guidance from ERP 4 included the following:

· No changes

Source

Kessler, R. C., Andrews, G., Colpe, L. J., Hiripi, E., Mroczek, D. K., Normand, S.-L. T., Walters, E. E., & Zaslavsky, A. (2002). Short screening scales to monitor population prevalences and trends in nonspecific psychological distress. Psychological Medicine, 32(6), 959-976.

General References

Scoring:

Kessler, R. C., Barker, P. R., Colpe, L. J., Epstein, J. F., Gfroerer, J. C., Hiripi, E., Howes, M. J, Normand, S-L. T., Manderscheid, R. W., Walters, E. E., & Zaslavsky, A. M. (2003). Screening for serious mental illness in the general population. Archives of General Psychiatry, 60(2), 184-189.

Definition of General Psychiatric Distress:

Leising, D., Grande, T., & Faber, R. (2009). The Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20): A measure of general psychological distress. Journal of Research in Personality, 43(4), 707-710.

Protocol ID:

121301

Variables:
Export Variables
Variable NameVariable IDVariable DescriptionVersiondbGaP Mapping
PX121301_Depressed PX121301010400 During the past 30 days, about how often did you feel... so depressed that nothing could cheer you up? 4 N/A
PX121301_Everything_An_Effort PX121301010500 During the past 30 days, about how often did you feel... that everything was an effort? 4 N/A
PX121301_Frequency_Feelings_Past_Thirty_Days PX121301020000 The last six questions asked about feelings that might have occurred during the past 30 days. Taking them altogether, did these feelings occur more often in the past 30 days than is usual for you, about the same as usual, or less often than usual? (If you never have any of these feelings, circle response option "4.") 4 N/A
PX121301_Hopeless PX121301010200 During the past 30 days, about how often did you feel... hopeless ? 4 N/A
PX121301_Nervous PX121301010100 During the past 30 days, about how often did you feel... nervous? 4 N/A
PX121301_Number_Days_Do_Only_Half PX121301040000 Not counting the days you reported in response to 3, how many days in the past 30 were you able to do only half or less of what you would normally have been able to do, because of these feelings? 4 N/A
PX121301_Number_Days_Worked PX121301030000 During the past 30 days, how many days out of 30 were you totally unable to work or carry out your normal activities because of these feelings? 4 N/A
PX121301_Number_Times_See_Doctor PX121301050000 During the past 30 days, how many times did you see a doctor or other health professional about these feelings? 4 N/A
PX121301_Physical_Health_Cause_Problems PX121301060000 During the past 30 days, how often have physical health problems been the main cause of these feelings? 4 N/A
PX121301_Restless PX121301010300 During the past 30 days, about how often did you feel... restless or fidgety? 4 N/A
PX121301_Worthless PX121301010600 During the past 30 days, about how often did you feel... worthless? 4 N/A
Research Domain Information
Measure Name:

General Distress Screener

Release Date:

May 12, 2010

Definition

A measure to assess symptoms of nonspecific psychological distress.

Purpose

This measure can be used as a covariate or to control for wide range of mental disorders by measuring an individual’s symptoms of nonspecific psychological distress.

Keywords

Psychiatric, psychological distress, National Health Interview Survey, NHIS