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Panic Disorder Severity Scale – Self Report

Panic Disorder Severity Scale – Self Report

What is PDSS-SR

The Panic Disorder Severity Scale (PDSS) is a seven-item scale designed to assess overall severity of panic disorder symptoms. The PDSS-SR is the self-report version of the PDSS. Although there are multiple measures designed to assess various aspects of panic disorder such as anxiety sensitivity, agoraphobic avoidance, physical symptoms and frequency of panic attacks, the Panic Disorder Severity Scale is one of only a limited number of scales designed to assess these multiple aspects at once.

PDSS-SR Printable PDF

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PDSS-SR Scoring and Interpretation

In scoring the Panic Disorder Severity Scale, items are rated on a scale of 0 to 4. A composite score is established by averaging the scores of the seven items.

Higher scores correspond to greater severity.

Pretreatment Scores on Items of the Panic Disorder Severity Scale

Table 4
Scale ItemMeanSD

panic frequency



panic distress



anticipatory anxiety



agoraphobic fear/avoidance



interoceptive fear/avoidance



work impairment/distress



social impairment/distress



Composite (average)



PsyPack can automatically score the PDSS-SR assessment and prepare corresponding tables and graphs.

PDSS-SR sample result

Further, PsyPack automatically plots a graph to help you easily track progress over time.

PDSS-SR track progress

Sample Report of PDSS-SR


Panic Disorder

What does PDSS-SR measure

The purpose of the evaluation is to:

  • measure panic disorder severity.



Type of outcome tool


Assessment modes


Age and eligibility

17 years and above

Estimated time

Less than 5 minutes


Since the questionnaire relies on client self-report, all responses should be verified by the clinician, and a definitive diagnosis is made on clinical grounds taking into account how well the client understood the questionnaire, as well as other relevant information from the client.

The Panic Disorder Severity Scale is not a diagnostic instrument. Rather, it provides a simple and efficient way to monitor panic disorder severity in patients in research and clinical settings for whom a diagnosis has been established. In short, the Panic Disorder Severity Scale holds a unique place in the assessment of panic disorder, with or without agoraphobia, as the only scale with which to evaluate the panic disorder severity on the basis of a systematic evaluation of DSM-IV criteria.

Attribution and References

Shear MK, Brown TA, Barlow DH, Money R, Sholomskas DE, Woods SW, Gorman JM, Papp LA. Multicenter collaborative Panic Disorder Severity Scale. American Journal of Psychiatry 1997;154:1571-1575