Examining the Factor Structure and Discriminant Validity of the 12-Item General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12) Among Spanish Postpartum Women

Jaume Aguado*, Alistair Campbell, Carlos Ascaso, Purificación Navarro, Lluïsa Garcia-Esteve, Juan V. Luciano

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In this study, the authors tested alternative factor models of the 12-item General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12) in a sample of Spanish postpartum women, using confirmatory factor analysis. The authors report the results of modeling three different methods for scoring the GHQ-12 using estimation methods recommended for categorical and binary data. A discriminant function analysis was also performed to test the utility of a multiple factor model. A two-phase cross-sectional study was designed: (a) 1,453 women visiting at 6 weeks postpartum completed the GHQ-12 and the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale questionnaire and (b) based on the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale outcomes, participants were stratified and randomly selected within each stratum for clinical evaluation. Using the Likert-type scoring approach, Hankins's one-factor model with "method effects" obtained the best fit. In addition, Graetz's three-factor model provided little discrimination between diagnostic groups, the factors being highly correlated. These results support the presence of only one latent factor in the GHQ-12.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)517-525
Number of pages9
JournalAssessment
Volume19
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2012

Keywords

  • confirmatory factor analysis
  • factor structure
  • General Health Questionnaire
  • GHQ-12
  • postpartum

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