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MAYSI-2 Scales

  ALCOHOL/DRUG USE
  The AD scale is intended to identify youths who are using alcohol or drugs to a significant degree, and who are therefore at risk of substance dependence and/or abuse. The scale has eight items. Five of the items are concerned with various negative consequences of substance abuse, and the remaining three address characteristics of substance use that are thought to represent factors for abuse.
 
ANGRY-IRRITABLE
  The AI scale is intended to assess explicit feelings of preoccupying anger and vengefulness, as well as a general tendency toward irritability, frustration, and tension related to anger. The scale has 9 items. Four explicitly concern angry mood and thoughts, three others are concerned with irritability and risk of impulsive reactions, and the last two items pertain to behavioral expression of anger.
 
DEPRESSED-ANXIOUS
  The DA scale is intended to elicit symptoms of mixed depression and anxiety. The scale has nine items. Five items inquire about manifestations of anxiety and inner turmoil, and four items are concerned with depressed mood.
 
SOMATIC COMPLAINTS
  The SC scale includes six items that ask about various bodily aches and pains that may affect the youth, along with specific bodily expressions of anxiety. An elevated score on this scale could occur for a variety of reasons. For example, somatic complaints tend to co-occur with depression and anxiety, and sometimes they can be associated with trauma history and with thought disorder as well. On the other hand, aches, pains, and other somatic complaints may be symptoms of physical illness, and such complaints should not be overlooked as symptoms in their own right.
 
SUICIDE IDEATION
  The SI scale has five items. Three of them specifically address thoughts and intentions about self-harm and two involve depressive symptoms that may present an increased risk for suicide. One of the items is shared with the DA scale.
 
THOUGHT DISTURBANCE (BOYS ONLY)
  The TD scale is intended to indicate the possibility of serious mental disorder involving problems with reality orientation. The scale has five items, four of which refer explicitly to altered perceptions in reality that are frequently associated with psychotic disorders. The remaining item refers to a condition of derealization ("things don't seem real") that is a more general abnormality of perception and consciousness. It is sometimes an early indication of a psychotic state, but it may simply arise in anxiety or dissociative states as well. In the study with which the MAYSI-2 was developed, the various ways that we used to identify which items came together as scales did not identify a "thought disturbance" scale for girls using MAYSI-2 items. Thus the TD scale should not be applied to girls.
 
TRAUMATIC EXPERIENCES
  The TE scale is intended to identify whether a youth has had greater exposure to traumatic events compared to other youths. Unlike other MAYSI-2 items, the TE items ask for responses regarding events or feelings over the youth's entire lifetime rather than just the "past few months." There are separate TE scales for boys and girls.