ISSN 2043-8087
Journal of Experimental Psychopathology
 Vol. In Press
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Sensory and affective components of symptom perception: A psychometric approach

  Marta Walentynowicz - University of Leuven, Belgium
  Michael Witthöft - University of Mainz, Germany
  Filip Raes - University of Leuven, Belgium
  Ilse Van Diest - University of Leuven, Belgium
  Omer Van den Bergh - University of Leuven, Belgium

In Press (Uncorrected Proof), Pages 1-20


Psychological accounts of symptom perception distinguish sensory-perceptual and affective-motivational components of symptoms, while psychometric analyses suggest a bifactor model describing the latent structure of symptom reporting. To corroborate the view that the general and symptom-specific factors of a bifactor model represent affective and sensory components, respectively, confirmatory factor analyses were performed on the Patient Health Questionnaire-15 and the Checklist for Symptoms in Daily Life completed by students (N = 1054). Additionally, the association of latent factors with negative affectivity (NA) was explored. For both questionnaires, the best fit was found for a complex bifactor model with one general and several symptom-specific factors. NA yielded strong associations with the general factor, but weaker with somatic symptom-specific factors in both questionnaires. The observed latent structure supports a distinction between sensory-perceptual and affective-motivational components, while the association between the NA and the general factor confirm the affective tone of the latter.

Table of Contents

Correspondence to
Dr. Omer Van den Bergh

Bifactor model; Confirmatory factor analysis; Negative affectivity; Symptom perception; Symptom reporting.

Received 23 Sep 2016; Revised 1 Sep 2017; Accepted 1 Sep 2017; In Press 31 Oct 2017

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