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PTSD: National Center for PTSD


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Child Posttraumatic Stress Reaction Index (CPTS-RI)



This section is for Researchers, Providers, & Helpers

Child Posttraumatic Stress Reaction Index (CPTS-RI)

Frederick, Pynoos, & Nader, 1992


The CPTS-RI (also known as the Reaction Index) is a 20-item interviewer-administered scale for children between ages 6 and 17 that assesses some of the DSM-III-R/DSM-IV symptoms for PTSD as well as guilt, impulse control, somatic symptoms, and regressive behaviors. Items are rated on a five point frequency scale (ranging from "none" to "most of the time"). The CPTS-RI yields total scores ranging from 0 to 80 that reflect the frequency of symptoms. Categories of degree of disorder (from doubtful to very severe) can be assigned based on the total scale score. This interview is available in a child’s and a parent’s report version.

Sample Item

Do you ever get scared, afraid, or upset when you think about (event)?


The UCLA PTSD Index for DSM-IV (UPID) (Pynoos, et al., 1998) is a revision of the CPTS-RI. It is a 48-item semi-structured interview that assesses a child’s exposure to 26 types of traumatic events and assesses DSM-IV PTSD diagnostic criteria. It includes 19 items to assess the 17 symptoms of PTSD as well as 2 associated symptoms (guilt and fear of event’s recurring).

The CPTS-RI Revision 2 (also referred to as the PTSD Index for DSM-IV; Rodriguez, 2002) is also a revision of the CPTS-RI. It was designed to increase the sensitivity of screening of trauma exposure and criterion A1 and A2 and to provide more guidance for the interviewer and child throughout the interview.


Nader, K. (1996). Psychometric review of Childhood PTS Reaction Index (CPTS-RI). In B. H. Stamm (Ed.), Measurement of stress, trauma, and adaptation (pp. 83-86). Lutherville, MD: Sidran Press.

Pynoos, R., Rodriguez, N., Steinberg, A., Stuber, M., & Frederick, C. (1998). UCLA PTSD Index for DSM-IV.

Rodriguez, N., Steinberg, A., & Pynoos, R. S. (2001). The Child Posttraumatic Stress Reaction Index, Revision 2.

Additional Reviews

Nader, K. O. (2004). Assessing traumatic experiences in children and adolescents: Self-reports of DSM PTSD Criteria B-D symptoms. In J. Wilson & T. Keane (Eds.), Assessing psychological trauma and PTSD, 2nd ed. (pp. 513-537). New York: Guilford Press.

To Obtain Scale


UCLA Trauma Psychiatry Service
300 Medical Plaza
Los Angeles, CA 90095-6968
Phone: (310) 206-8973

CPTS-RI Revision 2

Measure availability: We provide information on a variety of measures assessing trauma and PTSD. These measures are intended for use by qualified mental health professionals and researchers. Measures authored by National Center staff are available as direct downloads or by request. Measures developed outside of the National Center can be requested via contact information available on the information page for the specific measure.

Date this content was last updated is at the bottom of the page.

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