The Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression.

  title={The Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression.},
  author={Rachel Sharp},
  journal={Occupational medicine},
  volume={65 4},
  • R. Sharp
  • Published 1 June 2015
  • Psychology
  • Occupational medicine
The Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (often abbreviated to HRSD, HDRS or Ham-D) was written in the late 1950s by Max Hamilton, a psychiatrist at Leeds University and originally designed to evaluate the performance of the first group of antidepressants [1]. The scale is still widely used to measure the effectiveness of antidepressant medication in clinical trials. For more than 40 years, it was considered to be the ‘gold standard’ but in the 1990s, its use began to be questioned [2]. 

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Comparing the associations of three psychometric scales at baseline with long‐term prognosis of depression over a 10‐year period

The DS, SS, and HAMD scores at baseline were significantly associated with the long-term outcome of depression.

Minimal clinically important difference on the Beck Depression Inventory - II according to the patient's perspective

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Efficacy of Risperidone Augmentation with Ondansetron in the Treatment of Negative and Depressive Symptoms in Schizophrenia: A Randomized Clinical Trial

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Measuring Response to Clinical Care in Children and Young People with Anxiety, Depression, OCD or PTSD: An International Standard Set of Outcome Measures

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Comparison of the standard and structured interview guide for the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale in depressed geriatric inpatients.

  • P. MobergL. Lazarus V. Markvart
  • Psychology
    The American journal of geriatric psychiatry : official journal of the American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry
  • 2001
The interrater reliability of the standard Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (Ham-D) and a structured interview guide for the Ham-D (the SIGH-D) were compared in a sample of 20 elderly inpatients with

Severity classification on the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale.

The Hamilton Depression Rating Scale: has the gold standard become a lead weight?

Evidence suggests that the Hamilton depression scale is psychometrically and conceptually flawed, and the breadth and severity of the problems militate against efforts to revise the current instrument.


  • M. Hamilton
  • Psychology, Medicine
    Journal of neurology, neurosurgery, and psychiatry
  • 1960
The present scale has been devised for use only on patients already diagnosed as suffering from affective disorder of depressive type, used for quantifying the results of an interview, and its value depends entirely on the skill of the interviewer in eliciting the necessary information.

A meta-analytic comparison of the Beck Depression Inventory and the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression as measures of treatment outcome.

A comparison of effect sizes indicated that the Beck Depression Inventory was significantly less liberal than the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression, a liberal measure of treatment outcome.