Diagnostic practices for traumatized youths: Do clinicians incorporate symptom scale results?

Leticia Duvivier Osterberg, Amanda Jensen-Doss, Karen J. Cusack, Michael A. De Arellano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Clinician generated diagnoses are subject to heuristic biases, and structured diagnostic interviews are useful but costly diagnostic aids. Because dimensional rating scales may hold potential to improve diagnostic practices in community mental health settings, we examined how community clinicians incorporate the results of the Trauma Symptom Checklist for Children (TSCC; Briere 1996) into their diagnostic practices. Results suggest clinicians may attend to the TSCC anxiety and depression scores, but most scales agreed poorly with diagnoses assigned. While dimensional rating scales do hold potential as diagnostic aids, additional work on how to increase their utility to clinicians is needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)497-507
Number of pages11
JournalCommunity Mental Health Journal
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2009


  • Child diagnosis
  • Child trauma
  • Diagnostic agreement
  • Diagnostic practices
  • Trauma symptom checklist for children

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Health(social science)


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