Development and validation of a screening scale for depression in Korea: The Lee and Rhee depression Scale

Seon Hee Hwang, Min Kyu Rhee, Rhee Hun Kang, Hwa Young Lee, Byung Joo Ham, Young Sun Lee, Min Soo Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: The aim of this study was to develop a culturally sensitive instrument that addressed how individuals express and experience depression to detect this disorder in Koreans. We also assessed the validity, reliability, and diagnostic utility of this scale (Lee and Rhee Depression Scale; LRDS). Methods: The sample consisted of 3,697 normal adults selected from 12 administrative districts (Do) and 448 Korean patients diagnosed with depression using the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis I disorders (SCID-I). Reliability was calculated using Cronbach's α. Construct validity, discriminant validity, and concurrent validity were also measured. Receiver-operator-characteristic (ROC) analysis was employed to evaluate diagnostic efficiency. Results: The LRDS was found to be a reliable instrument (Cronbach's α=0.95) consisting of six factors: negative thinking about the future, negative thinking about the self, worry and agitation, depressed mood, somatization, and loss of volition. Comparison of LRDS scores discriminated the group of patients with depression from the normal individuals in the control group. The measure showed good concurrent validity in that scores were significantly and strongly correlated with scores on established scales such as the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAM-D), and the D scale of the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory-second edition (MMPI-2). Diagnostic efficiency was 77.7%, and the cut-off scores were 65 for males and 70 for females. Conclusion: To our knowledge, this is the first study to develop a depression-screening scale on the basis of Korean patients' complaints about the disorder. As a culturally sensitive tool, the LRDS will be useful in clinical and research settings in Korea.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)36-44
Number of pages9
JournalPsychiatry Investigation
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Mar


  • Depression scale
  • Diagnostic utility
  • Factor analysis
  • Reliability
  • Validity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry


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