Coordinating Author Information: Hana Algahmi, BA | University of Detroit- Mercy
Session Abstract: The SSS-8 is a brief measure of somatic symptom burden that has been associated with depression, anxiety, general health, and healthcare use in a general (German) population (Gierk et al., 2014). This study replicates and extends the construct validity of the SSS-8 using measures of general health, psychological symptoms, happiness, adverse childhood experiences, and health behavior in a community sample in the Detroit metropolitan area. The sample included 64 females and 33 males with a mean age of 33. A total of 69% were White, 34% were married or living with a partner, 56% had a 4-year college degree, 56% had a household income of less than $60,000. Results indicate that the SSS-8 showed adequate internal consistency (alpha = .79) and was significantly and positively correlated (p < .001) with number of chronic illnesses (r = 40), depression (r = .54), anxiety (r = .51), sleep problems (r = .60), and adverse childhood experiences (r = .53). The SSS-8 was significantly and negatively correlated (p < .001) with overall health (r = -.49), health behaviors (r = -.31), and happiness (r = -.38). The means of these same variables significantly differentiated participants above and below the recommended cut-off score of 12, F(8, 87) = 11.48, p = .0006. In a stepwise discriminant function analysis, sleep problems, number of chronic illnesses, anxiety, adverse childhood experiences, and health behavior correctly classified 85% of cases. These findings support the construct validity of the SSS-8 and its use as a measure of symptom burden in community-dwelling adults. Future studies should explore differences in somatic symptom burden across racial and ethnic groups.
Hana Algahmi, BA | University of Detroit- Mercy
Theresa Wyatt, PhD
John Porcerelli, PhD, ABPP