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      The Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Assessment (CAPA)

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          SYNOPSIS

          Great advances have been made during the last 20 years in the development of structured and semi-structured interviews for use with psychiatric patients. However, in the field of child and adolescent psychiatry there have been weaknesses in the specification and definition of both symptoms and the psychosocial impairments resulting from psychiatric disorder. Furthermore, most of the available interviews for use with children have been tied to a single diagnostic system (DSM-III, DSM-III-R, or ICD-9). This has meant that symptom coverage has been limited and nosological comparisons have been inhibited. The Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Assessment (CAPA) represents an attempt to remedy some of these shortcomings. This paper outlines the principles adopted in the CAPA to improve the standardization, reliability and meaningfulness of symptom and diagnostic ratings. The CAPA is an interviewer-based diagnostic interview with versions for use with children and their parents, focused on symptoms occurring during the preceding 3 month period, adapted for assessments in both clinical and epidemiological research.

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          Most cited references20

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          The Assessment of Affective Disorders in Children and Adolescents by Semistructured Interview

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            Development of a structured psychiatric interview for children: agreement between child and parent on individual symptoms.

            To test the reliability of children's reporting as compared with that of their mothers, a highly structured psychiatric diagnostic interview was used with 307 subjects, ages 6 through 16. Another interviewer gave each mother a similar interview about the child. Responses of each mother-child pair to 168 questions were compared using the kappa statistic. Highest agreement was found on questions concerning symptoms that are concrete, observable, severe, and unambiguous. Mothers tended to report significantly more behavioral symptoms, and children more subjective symptoms. Reasons for low kappas and asymmetrical reporting of symptoms are discussed.
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              Validity of the NIMH Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Children: a comparison between psychiatric and pediatric referrals.

              The NIMH Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Children (DISC) was used to evaluate 40 psychiatric referrals aged 7-11 and 40 pediatric referrals matched for age, sex, race, and socioeconomic status. Each parent and child was interviewed separately using parallel versions of the interview, DISC-P and DISC-C, and parents completed the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL). The psychiatric referrals had more psychiatric diagnoses and higher symptom scores than the pediatric referrals. Parent reports discriminated better between the criterion groups than child reports. In both groups, mild oppositional behavior and fears were commonly reported by parents, whereas mild separation anxiety, fears, and dysthymia were commonly reported by children. Attention deficit disorder, conduct disorder, and affective disorders were much more common among psychiatrically referred children. There was an association (chi 2 = 37.1, p less than .001) between abnormally high CBCL scores and diagnoses derived from the interview with the parent, but the association between the CBCL and the child interview was not significant. Over all, the results support the validity of the DISC-P, and to a lesser extent that of the DISC-C, in discriminating psychiatric from pediatric referrals, at the level of both symptoms and severe diagnoses, but not at the mild/moderate level of diagnosis.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Psychological Medicine
                Psychol. Med.
                Cambridge University Press (CUP)
                0033-2917
                1469-8978
                July 1995
                July 09 2009
                July 1995
                : 25
                : 4
                : 739-753
                Article
                10.1017/S003329170003498X
                7480451
                4f4716fb-7b59-4fd8-ae4f-8a2b074794b0
                © 1995

                https://www.cambridge.org/core/terms

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