Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale (SDS)

The Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale (SDS) is an instrument used for measuring the presence and severity of depressive symptoms in individuals. Developed by Dr. William WK Zung, this scale has been widely employed in various settings to assess depression and its associated factors across diverse populations.

The SDS consists of 20 items, with each item assigned a rating on a scale from 1 (none or some of the time) to 4 (most or all of the time). The total score ranges from 20 to 80, with higher scores indicating more severe depressive symptoms. The scale is designed to measure the affective, psychological, and somatic aspects of depression, enabling clinicians to better understand and diagnose the condition in their patients.

The development and validation of the Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale followed a systematic approach that involved multiple stages. Dr. Zung began by reviewing existing literature on depression and identifying common themes and symptoms associated with the disorder. He then constructed an initial set of items, which were refined through pilot testing and analysis of psychometric properties. The final version of the scale was established after several iterations and adjustments to ensure its reliability and validity in assessing depression.

The Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale is a widely used tool for evaluating depressive symptoms across various populations. Its development involved careful consideration of relevant literature, systematic testing, and refinement to produce a reliable and valid assessment instrument. The SDS serves as an important resource for clinicians in diagnosing and treating depression, ultimately helping to improve the lives of those affected by this common mental health disorder.

For each item below, please check the column which best describes how often you felt or behaved this way during the past several days.

  A Little Of The Time Some Of The Time Good Part Of The Time Most Of The Time
1. I feel down hearted and blue.
2. Morning is when I feel the best.
3. I have crying spells or feel like it.
4. I have trouble sleeping at night.
5. I eat as much as I used to.
6. I still enjoy sex.
7. I notice that I am losing weight.
8. I have trouble with constipation.
9. My heart beats faster than usual.
10. I get tired for no reason.
11. My mind is as clear as it used to be.
12. I find it easy to do the things I used to.
13. I am restless and can’t keep still.
14. I feel hopeful about the future.
15. I am more irritable than usual.
16. I find it easy to make decisions.
17. I feel that I am useful and needed.
18. My life is pretty full.
19. I feel that others would be better off if I were dead.
20. I still enjoy the things I used to do.
  1. William WK Zung. A Self-Rating Depression Scale. 12: Arch Gen Psychiatry 63-70. .