Both the Seasonal Pattern Assessment Questionnaire (SPAQ) and the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale Seasonal Affective Disorder version (SIGH-SAD) can aid in screening for SAD (Partonen & Pandi-Perumal, 2010). The SPAQ is a self-assessment tool that patients can complete independently. The SPAQ demonstrates high specificity (94%) but lower sensitivity (73%), and poorly differentiates SAD from sub-syndromal SAD; therefore, this tool should be supplemented with a clinical interview (Magnusson, 1996). The SPAQ alone is not recommended as a diagnostic instrument for SAD; however, it is useful as a screening instrument and could be combined with another tool such as the Hamilton Depression Rating-Scale (Ham-D) (Mersch et al., 2004).
The Ham-D is the most frequently used depression rating scale. The SIGH-SAD is a version of the Ham-D which emphasizes the atypical symptoms of depression. This tool can aid in diagnosing and monitoring SAD. The psychometric properties of the Ham-D consistently meet established criteria; specifically, both reliability and validity are adequate (Bagby, Ryder, Schuller, & Marshall, 2004). The SIGH-SAD is the psychometric tool used most frequently in clinical trials of BLT; however, it takes about 20 minutes to administer (Bagby et al., 2004). Patient-rated and clinician rated SIGH-SAD scores are strongly positively correlated, therefore, patients can complete the SIGH-SAD independently prior to their appointment (Bagby et al., 2004).
I attached a copy of both the SIGH-SAD and the SPAQ for reference!
Bagby, R. M., Ryder, A. G., Schuller, D. R., & Marshall, M. B. (2004). The Hamilton depression rating scale: Has the gold standard become a lead weight? Am J Psychiatry, 161, 2163-2177.
Partonen, T., & Pandi-Perumal, S. R. (2010). Seasonal affective disorder practice and research. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.Magnusson, A. (1996). Validation of the seasonal pattern assessment questionnaire. Journal Affect Disord, 40(3), 121-129.
Mersch, P. P., Vastenburg, N. C., Meesters, Y., Bouhuys, A. L., Beersma, D. G. van den Hoofdakker, R. H. den Boer, J. A. (2004). The reliability and validity of the seasonal pattern assessment questionnaire: A comparison between patient groups. Journal Affect Disord, 80(2-3), 209-219.