The Davidson Trauma Scale (DTS) was developed by Jonathan Davidson, co-chair of the DSM-IV Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Task Force and one of the leading authorities in the field. The DTS provides a quick and accurate measure of PTSD symptoms. It can be used to evaluate psychopathology in trauma victims, assess the effectiveness of treatment, and predict treatment success.

  • Easy administration, scoring and interpretation
  • Ability to break down the DTS total score so that frequency and severity can be assessed independently
  • Trauma symptom clusters in DSM-IV are reflected in the DTS norms subscale scores

Key Areas Measured

  • Intrusion
  • Avoidance/Numbing
  • Hyperarousal

Ehave has partnered with Multi-Health Systems (“MHS’) to gain access to their library of mental health assessments. Ehave has integrated MHS assessments into Ehave Connect, our mental health informatics platform. Conners is a registered trademark of MHS.

Ehave Connect Integration

Ehave is proud to offer MHS assessments through the Ehave Platform, so that users can more easily manage and communicate with patients, guide diagnosis and treatment, and interpret outcomes data. Learn more about the Ehave Platform >>

"Ehave offers an impressive informatics platform that we believe has the potential to enhance the administration and evaluation of our extensive catalog of psychological assessments."

Hazel WheldonPresident & COO of MHS

Scales and Forms

A quick and accurate measure of PTSD symptoms in ages 18 and older.

Startle, Physiological Arousal, Anxiety, and Numbness (SPAN)

Based on the DTS assessment, this four item questionnaire screens for critical indicators of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. Respondents are asked to refer to a particular traumatic event or series of events and designate symptom severity within the past week using a five point rating scale. The SPAN scale is ideal for use in primary care offices, multidisciplinary clinics, and for research purposes. A total score is used to indicate which clients could be referred for more comprehensive screening and follow-up, including a DTS administration.

How to Use

Respondents are asked to rate each of the 17 items referring to a particular traumatic event, or series of events, according to level of distress based on their ratings of symptoms that have occurred during the past week. Both frequency and severity are rated for each item. If the respondent has experienced multiple traumatic episodes, multiple copies of the DTS may be administered.

A total score, reflecting both frequency and severity ratings for all 17 items and separate ratings for the total frequency and total severity of all 17 items, can be used to interpret results. The 3 clusters—Intrusive, Avoidance/Numbing, and Hyperarousal—can be scored separately as well. Intrusion symptoms are covered in 5 items corresponding to Cluster B in DSM-IV; seven items correspond to Avoidance and Numbing, Cluster C in DSM-IV; and five items correspond to Hyperarousal, Cluster D in DSM-IV. A table that gives relative frequencies for individuals with and without PTSD at given DTS scores is also integrated into the form. This table aids in the interpretation of the respondent’s Total DTS score.

The DTS is suitable for adults who have an eighth-grade reading level or higher and is appropriate for both individual and group administrations.

Reliability and Validity

Because the DTS items were selected to represent each of the defining symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in DSM-IV, the scale can be useful in assessing diagnostic probability and the frequency and severity of PTSD symptoms.

Normative Data

The DTS was developed and tested in broad-based samples totaling over 400 subjects, inclusive of men and women and different traumata. Subjects were recruited from four clinical research studies of PTSD groups. Study 1 was composed of 78 female rape victims in treatment at Duke University Medical Center, North Carolina. Study 2 included 53 Hurricane Andrew victims from Florida. Study 3 consisted of 110 male combat veterans seen at Durham Veterans’ Administration Medical Center, North Carolina. Study 4 consisted of 102 individuals in a multi-center clinical trial throughout the United States The DTS Manual documents specific demographic aspects of the sample.

DSM-IV™ Diagnostic Criteria is reprinted with permission from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition™. The American Psychiatric Association is not affiliated with and is not endorsing this product. All Rights Reserved. 

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