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Keywords:

  • social phobia;
  • receiver operating characteristics (ROC);
  • generalized social anxiety disorder;
  • nongeneralized social anxiety disorder;
  • case finding

Abstract

Objective: This study examined whether the self-report version of the Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale (LSAS-SR) could accurately identify individuals with social anxiety disorder and individuals with the generalized subtype of social anxiety disorder. Furthermore, the study sought to determine the optimal cutoffs for the LSAS-SR for identifying patients with social anxiety disorder and its generalized subtype. Methods: Two hundred and ninety-one patients with clinician-assessed social anxiety disorder (240 with generalized social anxiety disorder) and 53 control participants who were free from current Axis-1 disorders completed the LSAS-SR. Results: Receiver Operating Characteristic analyses revealed that the LSAS-SR performed well in identifying participants with social anxiety disorder and generalized social anxiety disorder. Consistent with Mennin et al.'s [2002: J Anxiety Disord 16:661–673] research on the clinician-administered version of the LSAS, cutoffs of 30 and 60 on the LSAS-SR provided the best balance of sensitivity and specificity for classifying participants with social anxiety and generalized social anxiety disorder, respectively. Conclusions: The LSAS-SR may be an accurate and cost-effective way to identify and subtype patients with social anxiety disorder, which could help increase the percentage of people who receive appropriate treatment for this debilitating disorder. Depression and Anxiety, 2009. © 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.