Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale

The PANSS or the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale is a medical scale used for measuring symptom severity of patients with schizophrenia. It was published in 1987 by Stanley Kay, Lewis Opler, and Abraham Fiszbein. It is widely used in the study of antipsychotic therapy.

The name refers to the two types of symptoms in schizophrenia, as defined by the American Psychiatric Association: positive symptoms, which refer to an excess or distortion of normal functions (e.g., hallucinations and delusions), and negative symptoms, which represent a diminution or loss of normal functions.

The PANSS is a relatively brief interview, requiring 45 to 50 minutes to administer.[1] The interviewer must be trained to a standardized level of reliability.[2]


Interview items

To assess a patient using PANSS, an approximately 45-minute clinical interview is conducted. The patient is rated from 1 to 7 on 30 different symptoms based on the interview as well as reports of family members or primary care hospital workers.[3]

Positive scale

  • Delusions
  • Conceptual disorganization
  • Hallucinations
  • Hyperactivity
  • Grandiosity
  • Suspiciousness/persecution
  • Hostility

Negative scale

  • Blunted affect
  • Emotional withdrawal
  • Poor rapport
  • Passive/apathetic social withdrawal
  • Difficulty in abstract thinking
  • Lack of spontaneity and flow of conversation
  • Stereotyped thinking

General Psychopathology scale

  • Somatic concern
  • Anxiety
  • Guilt feelings
  • Tension
  • Mannerisms and posturing
  • Depression
  • Motor retardation
  • Uncooperativeness
  • Unusual thought content
  • Disorientation
  • Poor attention
  • Lack of judgment and insight
  • Disturbance of volition
  • Poor impulse control
  • Preoccupation
  • Active social avoidance

See also


External links

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