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The Hypomania Checklist (HCL) - Systematic review of its properties to screen for bipolar disorders

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Thomas Meyer, Julia Schrader, Matthew Ridley


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Objective: Bipolar disorders (BDs) are often not recognised with potentially drastic consequences for the individuals and their families. In clinical practice self-reports can be used to screen to enhance recognition. We therefore present a systematic review of the screening properties for the Hypomania Checklist (HCL-32).Methods: A systematic literature search was conducted to identify all relevant studies looking at the screening properties of the HCL-32 in adults.Results: Out of 196 papers 21 papers reported data on 22 independent samples. We narratively reviewed these studies. Weighted estimated Sensitivity was 80% regardless of whether a BD diagnosis was compared to unipolar depression or any other non-bipolar diagnosis. Specificity indicated that the HCL-32 was better when comparing BD to unipolar depression (65.3%) than to any other diagnostic category (57.3%). Fewer studies provided estimates for predictive powers, leading to less reliable overall estimates for these indicators.Conclusions: Despite some limitations, using the HCL-32 as a first screening in patients seeking help for depression can be recommended, but should never be used on its own for diagnosing. Future research should examine whether screening properties can be improved by developing an algorithm incorporating the negative consequences reported for different areas in the HCL-32. (C) 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Meyer TD, Schrader J, Ridley M, Lex C

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Comprehensive Psychiatry

Year: 2014

Volume: 55

Issue: 5

Pages: 1310-1321

Print publication date: 21/04/2014

ISSN (print): 0010-440X

ISSN (electronic): 1532-8384

Publisher: W.B. Saunders Co.


DOI: 10.1016/j.comppsych.2014.03.002


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