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Validity and reliability of the Spanish versions of the Bech-Rafaelsen’s mania and melancholia scales for bipolar disorders


  • A preliminary version of this paper was presented as a poster communication to the 19th ECNP Congress, Paris, France, 16–20 September, 2006

Javier Ballesteros, Department of Neuroscience – Psychiatry, University of the Basque Country, UPV-EHU, Barrio Sarriena S/N, E-48940-Leioa, Spain.


Objective:  To assess classical psychometric properties of the Spanish versions of the Bech-Rafaelsen’s mania (MAS) and melancholia (MES) scales.

Method:  Observational, prospective, and multicentric study in bipolar out-patients. Convergent validity was assessed against the Young Mania Rating Scale and the Montgomery-Åsberg Depression Rating Scale. Discriminant validity, reliability, and sensitivity to change, were also assessed.

Results:  One hundred and thirteen bipolar patients with a manic episode and 102 bipolar patients with a depressive episode were included. Both the MAS and the MES showed appropriate convergent validity (r > 0.90), discriminant validity (P < 0.0001), internal consistency (Cronbach’s alpha >0.80), test–retest reliability [intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) = 0.69 for the MAS and 0.94 for the MES], inter-rater reliability (ICC > 0.80), and sensitivity to change at 4 weeks since inception (P < 0.0001; within-group effect size ≥1.8).

Conclusion:  The Spanish versions of both scales present appropriate psychometric estimates in bipolar patients treated in ambulatory care.