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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the PCL-5 used for?

The PCL-5 is a 20 item self-report measure of the 20 DSM-5 symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Included in the scale are four domains consistent with the four criterion of PTSD in DSM-5: The PCL-5 can be used to monitor symptom change, to screen for PTSD, or to make a provisional PTSD diagnosis.

How do you score pcl-5?

The PCL-5 can be scored in different ways: A total symptom severity score (range - 0-80) can be obtained by summing the scores for each of the 20 items. DSM-5 symptom cluster severity scores can be obtained by summing the scores for the items within a given cluster, i.e.,... A provisional PTSD ...

Are pcl-5 scores compatible with DSM-IV scores?

The change in the rating scale, combined with the increase from 17 to 20 items means that PCL-5 scores are not compatible with PCL for DSM-IV scores and cannot be used interchangeably. The PCL-5 is a self-report measure that can be completed by patients in a waiting room prior to a session or by participants as part of a research study.

What is the pcl-5 cutoff score for PTSD?

Initial research suggests that a PCL-5 cutoff score between 31-33 is indicative of probable PTSD across samples. However, additional research is needed. Further, because the population and the purpose of the screening may warrant different cutoff scores, users are encouraged to consider both of these factors when choosing a cutoff score.


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