Clinical Global Impression

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The Clinical Global Impression rating scales are commonly used measures of symptom severity, treatment response and the efficacy of treatments in treatment studies of patients with mental disorders (Guy, W., 1976). Many researchers, while recognizing the validity of the scale, consider it to be subjective as it requires the user of the scale to compare the subjects to typical patients in the clinician experience.

The Clinical Global Impression – Severity scale (CGI-S) is a 7-point scale that requires the clinician to rate the severity of the patient's illness at the time of assessment, relative to the clinician's past experience with patients who have the same diagnosis. Considering total clinical experience, a patient is assessed on severity of mental illness at the time of rating 1, normal, not at all ill; 2, borderline mentally ill; 3, mildly ill; 4, moderately ill; 5, markedly ill; 6, severely ill; or 7, extremely ill.

The Clinical Global Impression – Improvement scale (CGI-I) is a 7 point scale that requires the clinician to assess how much the patient's illness has improved or worsened relative to a baseline state at the beginning of the intervention. and rated as: 1, very much improved; 2, much improved; 3, minimally improved; 4, no change; 5, minimally worse; 6, much worse; or 7, very much worse.

The Clinical Global Impression – Efficacy Index is a 4 point × 4 point rating scale that assesses the therapeutic effect of the treatment as 1, unchanged to worse; 2, minimal; 3, moderate; 4, marked by side effects rated as none, do not significantly interfere with patient's functioning, significantly interferes with patient's functioning and outweighs therapeutic effect.

See also[edit]


  • Guy W: ECDEU Assessment Manual for Psychopharmacology —Revised (DHEW Publ No ADM 76–338). Rockville, MD, U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Public Health Service, Alcohol, Drug Abuse, and Mental Health Administration, NIMH Psychopharmacology Research Branch, Division of Extramural Research Programs, 1976, pp 218–222
  • Guy W: Clinical Global Impressions (CGI) Scale. Modified From: Rush J, et al.: Psychiatric Measures, APA, Washington DC, 2000.