Study data published in Psychiatry Research indicate that an interview-only version of the Dimensional Yale-Brown Obsessive-Compulsive Scale (DY-BOCS) may be a valid measure of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) in youth seeking treatment.

The study cohort comprised 119 children and adolescents referred to an outpatient mental health clinic in southern Sweden. At baseline, researchers employed a modified version of the interview portion of the DY-BOCS to capture OCD symptoms and impairment severity. Participants were also administered other measures of OCD, anxiety, depression, and overall functioning. A subset (n=100) of the original cohort were reassessed 14 months after baseline. Participants were mean age 13.4 (standard deviation, 2.7; range, 6.5-17.8), and 62% were girls. The most commonly co-occurring disorders were anxiety disorders (50.4%), attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (15.1%), autism spectrum disorder (7.6%), and major depression (9.2%).  

The majority (93%) of baseline DY-BOCS interviews were completed in a single 60-minute session. Participants requiring a second interview session were more often younger (< age 9) and more likely to have a neurodevelopmental disorder or a broader array of OCD symptoms. The interview-only version of the DY-BOCS demonstrated high levels of internal consistency for the dimensional subscale scores (Cronbach’s α>0.90) and acceptable levels (α=0.70) for the total severity scale scores. Global DY-BOCS scores correlated with clinician-rated measures of OCD severity and general functioning at baseline. Of patients who completed follow-up visits, changes in DY-BOCS global score were significantly correlated with changes in other OCD measures, suggesting that the DY-BOCS is sensitive to the effects of OCD treatment.

Continue Reading

Related Articles

Researchers noted that as a Swedish translation of the original, the presently assessed modified DY-BOCS may require additional translation iterations for full efficiency. Even so, the present study found that a single 60-minute interview session may be sufficient for capturing OCD symptoms in youth. Such data may be useful to clinicians deciding the treatment course for children and adolescents with OCD.


Cervin M, Perrin S, Olsson E, Claesdotter-Knutsson E, Lindvall M. Validation of an interview-only version of the Dimensional Yale-Brown Obsessive-Compulsive Scale (DY-BOCS) in treatment-seeking youth with obsessive-compulsive disorder [published online November 20, 2018]. Psychiatry Res. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2018.11.048