Assessment of Depression

pp 143-152

The Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression

  • M. Hamilton

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This observer-rating scale was designed in 1957 and a preliminary report published 3 years later [5]. Soon after, the introduction of many antidepressant drugs led to increasing interest in its use. A slightly modified form was published in a definitive paper [6]. The National Institute of Mental Health (United States) adopted a modified version (with three extra items) for use in its Early Clinical Drug Evaluation Programme, but subsequently reverted to the standard form. This promoted the use of the scale so that, in spite of its deficiencies and limitations, it has been described as the standard scale against which others are evaluated. It has been used all over the world and has been translated into nearly all the European languages; there is even a Korean translation [12].