About This Product
BY EDWARD S. KUBANY, PHD, ABBP
Whether you’re screening for or responding to Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, this set of three related inventories can improve assessment and focus treatment.
The Trauma Assessment Inventories include two sets of materials:
Screening Kit, composed of the Traumatic Life Events Questionnaire (TLEQ) and the PTSD Screening and Diagnostic Scale (PSDS)
Treatment Kit, composed of the Trauma-Related Guilt
Inventory (TRGI) and a brief worksheet called the Attitudes About Guilt Survey (AAGS).
The first kit provides a quick, convenient trauma history and PTSD screen, and the second helps clinicians who treat PTSD. Both are intended for use with adults, and both offer hand or computer scoring.
Traumatic Life Events Questionnaire (TLEQ) and PTSD Screening and Diagnostic Scale (PSDS)
The TLEQ is a brief self-report inventory that asks about current and prior exposure to 21 kinds of potentially traumatic events (from natural disasters to sexual abuse). All events are described in behavioral terms, avoiding emotionally charged words such as “rape” or “abuse.” Clients use a 7-point response format to indicate frequency of occurrence. Consistent with DSM-IV diagnostic criteria, follow-up probes ask whether respondents felt fear, helplessness, or horror during any event experienced. Completed in just 10 to 15 minutes, the TLEQ is written at a ninth-grade reading level.
The PSDS is a 38-item self-report inventory that assesses the six DSM-IV criteria for making a diagnosis of PTSD. Respondents indicate the degree to which they experienced each of 17 symptoms that correspond to the 17 key features of PTSD. They are also asked whether they have experienced any symptom for longer than 30 days and, if so, how long. Other items inquire about specific areas of functioning (such as social life) and trauma-related anger, guilt, and grief. All items are written at an eighth-grade reading level.
Used together, the TLEQ and PSDS constitute a quick trauma history/PTSD screen that is extremely useful in settings such as emergency rooms, where clinicians have no prior knowledge of a patient’s background. In mental health clinics, victim service agencies, and battered women’s shelters, the inventories are useful in diagnosing PTSD, assessing symptom severity, and monitoring treatment progress.
Trauma-Related Guilt Inventory (TRGI)
The TRGI is an event-focused self-report measure of trauma-related guilt. Unlike other trauma instruments, it assesses both cognitive and emotional aspects of guilt associated with a specific traumatic event (a combat experience, sexual abuse, or death of a loved one, for example). In addition, the TRGI is very useful in planning appropriate intervention and monitoring treatment effectiveness.
The TRGI asks about distorted beliefs that result in irrational guilt. Written at a fifth-grade reading level, it includes 32 items and a 5-point response scale. It generates six scores:
- Global Guilt
- Guilt Cognitions
- Insufficient Justification
All scores are reliable and decrease over the course of treatment.
The TRGI quickly identifies beliefs that can be targeted for modification in cognitive–behavioral therapy. In addition, it provides the Attitudes About Guilt Survey (AAGS), a reproducible worksheet that can be used to focus each session of cognitive therapy for trauma-related guilt.
The Trauma Assessment Inventories give clinicians a quick, convenient, and cost-effective way to respond to possible cases of PTSD. In any clinical setting, these instruments permit rapid assessment and targeted treatment.