OBJECTIVES: As the world population ages, psychiatrists will increasingly need instruments for measuring constructs of psychopathology that are generalizable to diverse elders. The study tested whether syndromes of co-occurring problems derived from self-ratings of psychopathology by US elders would fit self-ratings by elders in 19 other societies.
METHODS/DESIGN: The Older Adult Self-Report (OASR) was completed by 12,826 60- to 102-year-olds in 19 societies from North and South America, Asia, and Eastern, Northern, Southern, and Western Europe, plus the US. Individual and multi-group confirmatory factor analyses (CFAs) tested the fit of the 7-syndrome OASR model, consisting of the Anxious/Depressed, Worries, Somatic Complaints, Functional Impairment, Memory/Cognition Problems, Thought Problems, and Irritable/Disinhibited syndromes.
RESULTS: In individual CFAs, the primary model fit index showed good fit for all societies, while the secondary model fit indices showed acceptable to good fit. The items loaded strongly on their respective factors, with a median item loading of .63 across the 20 societies; and 98.7% of the loadings were statistically significant. In multi-group CFAs, 98% of items demonstrated approximate or full metric invariance. Fifteen percent of items demonstrated approximate or full scalar invariance and another 59% demonstrated scalar invariance across more than half of societies.
CONCLUSIONS: The findings supported the generalizability of OASR syndromes across societies. The seven syndromes offer empirically-based clinical constructs that are relevant for elders of different backgrounds. They can be used to assess diverse elders, and as a taxonomic framework to facilitate communication, services, research and training in geriatric psychiatry. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Bibliographical noteThis article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
- alignment CFA
- empirical syndromes
- Netherlands Twin Register (NTR)