Data from a study published in the American Journal of Psychiatry1 shows that the Clinical Assessment Interview for Negative Symptoms (CAINS) is an effective tool in measuring negative symptoms in schizophrenia.
Reliability and validity of the 13-item tool were assessed in a large and diverse sample of outpatients with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder (N=162) across four sites. The researchers found good internal consistency, test-retest stability, and interrater agreement. They also found good convergent and discriminant validity and noted that the scales were related to real-world vocational, independent living, and social/familial functioning.
An accompanying editorial2 by Deanna M Barch, PhD, shares additional insights into CAINS. For instance, she notes the CAINS provides much broader coverage of negative symptoms than some of the other commonly used instruments. In addition, she said “the CAINS represents a critical advance for our field” both for theoretical and practical reasons.
1. Kring AM, Gur RE, Blanchard JJ, Horan WP, Reise SP. The Clinical Assessment Interview for Negative Symptoms (CAINS): Final Development and Validation. Am J Psychiatry. 2013;170:165-172.
2. Barch DM. The CAINS: Theoretical and Practical Advances in the Assessment of Negative Symptoms in Schizophrenia. Am J Psychiatry. 2013;170:133-135.