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Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale (HAM-A)

Click here for a PDF of the HAM-A


Developed in 1959 by Dr. M. Hamilton, the scale has proven useful not only in following individual patients but also in research involving many patients.

How to Use

The Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale (HAM-A) is a widely used and well-validated tool for measuring the severity of a patient's anxiety. It should be administered by an experienced clinician.
The major value of HAM-A is to assess the patient's response to a course of treatment, rather than as a diagnostic or screening tool. By administering the scale serially, a clinician can document the results of drug treatment or psychotherapy.


How to Score

The HAM-A probes 14 parameters and takes 15-20 minutes to complete the interview and score the results. Each item is scored on a 5-point scale, ranging from 0=not present to 4=severe.

Sensitivity:  85.7%
Specificity:  63.5%
Kummer A, et al.  Arq Neuropsiquiatr. 2010;68(4):495-501

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