EXPLORING PERSONALITY DIAGNOSIS STABILITY FOLLOWING ACUTE PSYCHOTHERAPY FOR CHRONIC POSTTRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER.
ABSTRACT: Axis I comorbidity complicates diagnosing axis II personality disorders (PDs). PDs might influence Axis I outcome. No research has examined psychotherapy effects on PDs of treating Axis I comorbidity. Secondary analysis of a randomized controlled trial examined PD diagnostic stability after brief psychotherapy of chronic posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD).Patients with chronic PTSD were randomly assigned to 14 weeks of prolonged exposure, interpersonal psychotherapy, or relaxation therapy. Assessments included the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV, Patient Version (SCID-P) and Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis II Disorders (SCID-II) at baseline, week 14, and for treatment responders (?30% clinician-administered PTSD scale improvement, defined a priori) at week 26 follow-up. We hypothesized patients whose PTSD improved would retain fewer baseline PD diagnoses posttreatment, particularly with personality traits PTSD mimics, e.g. paranoid and avoidant.Forty-seven (47%) of 99 SCID-II patients evaluated at baseline received a SCID-II diagnosis: paranoid (28%), obsessive-compulsive (27%), and avoidant (23%) PDs were most prevalent. Among 78 patients who repeated SCID-II evaluations posttreatment, 45% (N = 35) had baseline PD diagnoses, of which 43% (N = 15/35) lost at week 14. Three (7%) patients without baseline PDs acquired diagnoses at week 14; 10 others shifted diagnoses. Treatment modality and PTSD response were unrelated to PD improvement. Of treatment responders reevaluated at follow-up (N = 44), 56% with any baseline Axis II diagnosis had none at week 26.This first evaluation of Axis I psychotherapy effects on personality disorder stability found that acutely treating a chronic state decreased apparent trait-across most PDs observed. These exploratory findings suggest personality diagnoses may have limited prognostic meaning in treating chronic PTSD.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Investigations in the field of gender identity disorder (GID) have been mostly related to psychiatric comorbidity and severe psychiatric disorders, but have focused less on personality and personality disorders (PDs). AIMS: The aim of the study was to assess the presence of PDs in persons with GID as compared to cisgendered (a cisgender person is a person who is content to remain the gender they were assigned at birth) heterosexuals, as well as to biological sex. METHODS: The study sample consisted of 30 persons with GID and 30 cisgendered heterosexuals from the general population. The assessment of PDs was conducted by application of the self-administered Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis II PDs (SCID-II). RESULTS: Persons with GID compared to cisgender heterosexuals have higher presence of PDs, particularly Paranoid PD, avoidant PDs, and comorbid PDs. In addition, MtF (transwomen are people assigned male at birth who identify as women) persons are characterized by a more severe psychopathological profile. CONCLUSIONS: Assessment of PDs in persons with GID is of great importance as it comprises a key part of personalized treatment plan tailoring, as well as a prognostic factor for sex-reassignment surgery (SRS) outcome.
Project description:A growing body of research suggests that traumatic events lead to persisting personality change characterized by increased neuroticism. Relevantly, enduring improvements in Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) symptoms have been found in response to 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA)-assisted psychotherapy. There is evidence that lasting changes in the personality feature of "openness" occur in response to hallucinogens, and that this may potentially act as a therapeutic mechanism of change. The present study investigated whether heightened Openness and decreased Neuroticism served as a mechanism of change within a randomized trial of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for chronic, treatment-resistant PTSD. The Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale (CAPS) Global Scores and NEO PI-R Personality Inventory (NEO) Openness and Neuroticism Scales served as outcome measures. Results indicated that changes in Openness but not Neuroticism played a moderating role in the relationship between reduced PTSD symptoms and MDMA treatment. Following MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, increased Openness and decreased Neuroticism when comparing baseline personality traits with long-term follow-up traits also were found. These preliminary findings suggest that the effect of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy extends beyond specific PTSD symptomatology and fundamentally alters personality structure, resulting in long-term persisting personality change. Results are discussed in terms of possible mechanisms of psychotherapeutic change.
Project description:Although psychotherapy is considered the treatment of choice for patients with personality disorders (PDs), there is no consensus about the optimal level of care for this group of patients. This study reports the results from the 6-year follow-up of the Ullevål Personality Project (UPP), a randomized clinical trial comparing outpatient individual psychotherapy with a long-term step-down treatment program that included a short-term day hospital treatment followed by combined group and individual psychotherapy.The UPP included 113 patients with PDs. Outcome was evaluated after 8 months, 18 months, 3 years and 6 years and was based on a wide range of clinical measures, such as psychosocial functioning, interpersonal problems, symptom severity, and axis I and II diagnoses.At the 6-year follow-up, there were no statistically significant differences in outcome between the treatment groups. Effect sizes ranged from medium to large for all outcome variables in both treatment arms. However, patients in the outpatient group had a marked decline in psychosocial functioning during the period between the 3- and 6-year follow-ups; while psychosocial functioning continued to improve in the step-down group during the same period. This difference between groups was statistically significant.The findings suggest that both hospital-based long-term step-down treatment and long-term outpatient individual psychotherapy may improve symptoms and psychosocial functioning in poorly functioning PD patients. Social and interpersonal functioning continued to improve in the step-down group during the post-treatment phase, indicating that longer-term changes were stimulated during treatment.NCT00378248.
Project description:Patients with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are prone to dissociation, which in theory should interfere with successful treatment. However, most empirical studies do not substantiate this assumption.The primary objective was to test whether state dissociation predicts the success of an adaptation of dialectical behavior therapy designed for the treatment of patients with PTSD after childhood sexual abuse (CSA) (DBT-PTSD). We further explored whether the operationalization of dissociation as state versus trait dissociation made a difference with respect to prediction of improvement.We present a hypothesis-driven post hoc analysis of a randomized controlled trial on the efficacy in patients with PTSD after CSA. Regression analyses relating pre-post improvements in the Clinician-Administered PTSD Scale (CAPS) and the Posttraumatic Diagnostic Scale (PDS) to dissociation were applied to the women who participated in the active treatment arm (DBT-PTSD). Multivariate models accounting for major confounders were used to relate improvements in both the CAPS and the PDS to (1) state dissociation as assessed after each treatment session and (2) trait dissociation as assessed at baseline.State dissociation during psychotherapy sessions predicted improvement after DBT-PTSD: patients with low state dissociation during treatment had a higher chance to show substantial improvement. This relation consistently emerged across subgroups of PTSD patients with and without borderline personality disorder. The operationalization of dissociation as state versus trait dissociation made a difference as improvement was not significantly predicted from trait dissociation.Dissociation during treatment sessions may reduce success with trauma-focused therapies such as DBT-PTSD. Accordingly, clinical studies aimed at improving ways to address dissociation are needed.
Project description:This study aimed to explore the differences in pathogenic beliefs (PBs) between patients with schizotypal personality disorder (PD) and those with other PDs or without any PD. The study was conducted among 212 patients treated with psychotherapy at the Psychotherapy and Personality Disorder Clinic, Chiang Mai University between 2007 and 2019. Collected data included sociodemographic information, psychiatric disorders and personality disorder as determined by the Structured Clinical Interview for the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition, and the Pathogenic Belief Scale (PBS). An analysis was conducted to compare three groups, i.e., patients with schizotypal PD, patients with other PDs and patients without any PD. The PBS score was compared by two outcomes: a total score and a categorical score of individual items. The entire sample was predominantly female (62.3%) with a mean age of 31.41 years. Most participants had a bachelor's degree (76.9%), lived alone (72.6%) and received diagnoses of major depressive disorder (45.8%). No significant differences were found in participants' characteristics regarding age, sex, educational level, marital status and psychiatric clinical diagnosis among the three groups. The mean PBS total score was highest for schizotypal PD (mean = 58.74, SD = 11.54), compared with non-schizotypal PD (mean = 46.14, SD = 13.15) and non-PD (mean = 46.07, SD = 11.17). Twenty of 27 items were significantly higher in the schizotypal PD group than in other groups, after adjusting for type I error. The number of PBs was significantly prominent for schizotypal PD. Possible explanations were provided.
Project description:This study examined the prevalence of nicotine dependence (ND) and its associations with DSM-IV personality disorders (PDs) among current smokers (n=7078), controlling for sociodemographic characteristics and comorbid Axis I and II disorders. Data were derived from a nationally representative sample of the U.S. population. Although all PDs were significantly associated with ND when sociodemographic factors were controlled, only schizotypal, borderline, narcissistic and obsessive-compulsive PDs were associated with ND after adding controls for Axis I and other Axis II disorders. These associations remained significant after controlling for degree of smoking exposure. The results suggest that both shared and PD-specific pathogenetic factors underlie these PD-ND associations. Implications are also discussed in terms of the relationship between personality features of schizotypal, borderline, narcissistic and obsessive-compulsive PDs and the self-medication hypothesis and the role of neurotransmission.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Long-term forms of depression represent a significant mental health problem for which there is a lack of effective evidence-based treatment. This study aims to produce findings about the effectiveness of psychoanalytic psychotherapy in patients with treatment-resistant/treatment-refractory depression and to deepen the understanding of this complex form of depression. METHODS/DESIGN INDEX GROUP: Patients with treatment resistant/treatment refractory depression. DEFINITION & INCLUSION CRITERIA: Current major depressive disorder, 2 years history of depression, a minimum of two failed treatment attempts, ?14 on the HRSD or ?21 on the BDI-II, plus complex personality and/or psycho-social difficulties. EXCLUSION CRITERIA: Moderate or severe learning disability, psychotic illness, bipolar disorder, substance dependency or receipt of test intervention in the previous two years. DESIGN: Pragmatic, randomised controlled trial with qualitative and clinical components. TEST INTERVENTION: 18 months of weekly psychoanalytic psychotherapy, manualised and fidelity-assessed using the Psychotherapy Process Q-Sort. CONTROL CONDITION: Treatment as usual, managed by the referring practitioner. RECRUITMENT: GP referrals from primary care. RCT MAIN OUTCOME: HRSD (with ?14 as remission). SECONDARY OUTCOMES: depression severity (BDI-II), degree of co-morbid disorders Axis-I and Axis-II (SCID-I and SCID-II-PQ), quality of life and functioning (GAF, CORE, Q-les-Q), object relations (PROQ2a), Cost-effectiveness analysis (CSRI and GP medical records). FOLLOW-UP: 2 years. Plus: a). Qualitative study of participants' and therapists' problem formulation, experience of treatment and of participation in trial. (b) Narrative data from semi-structured pre/post psychodynamic interviews to produce prototypes of responders and non-responders. (c) Clinical case-studies of sub-types of TRD and of change. DISCUSSION: TRD needs complex, long-term intervention and extended research follow-up for the proper evaluation of treatment outcome. This pushes at the limits of the design of randomised therapeutic trials. We discuss some of the consequent problems and suggest how they may be mitigated. TRIAL REGISTRATION: Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN40586372.
Project description:BACKGROUND:No studies of psychotherapies for panic disorder (PD) have examined effects on comorbid personality disorders (PersD), yet half such patients have a PersD. METHODS:In a randomized trial for PD with and without agoraphobia comparing Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Panic-Focused Psychodynamic Psychotherapy (PFPP), PersD was assessed pre-to-post treatment with the Structured Clinical Interview for the Diagnosis of Axis-II Disorders (SCID-II). For patients completing therapy (n = 118, 54 with PersD), covariance between panic and SCID-II criteria improvements was analyzed. SCID-II diagnostic remission and recovery were evaluated. Comparative efficacy of PFPP versus CBT for improving PersD was analyzed both for the average patient, and as a function of PersD severity. RESULTS:37 and 17% of PersD patients experienced diagnostic PersD remission and recovery, respectively. Larger reductions in PersD were related to more panic improvement, with a modest effect size (r = 0.28). Although there was no difference between treatments in their ability to improve PersD for the average patient (d = 0.01), patients meeting more PersD criteria did better in PFPP compared to CBT (P = .007), with PFPP being significantly superior at 11 criteria and above (d = 0.66; 3 more criteria lost). CONCLUSIONS:PersD presenting in the context of primary PD rarely resolves during psychotherapies focused on PD, and change in PersD only moderately tracks panic improvements, indicating non-overlap of the constructs. Patients receiving panic-focused psychotherapies may require additional treatment for their PersD. PFPP may be superior at improving severe PersD, but replication of this finding is required.
Project description:Chronic cocaine use has been associated with impairments in social cognition, self-serving and antisocial behavior, and socially relevant personality disorders (PD). Despite the apparent relationship between Machiavellianism and stimulant use, no study has explicitly examined this personality concept in cocaine users so far. In the frame of the longitudinal Zurich Cocaine Cognition Study, the Machiavellianism Questionnaire (MACH-IV) was assessed in 68 recreational and 30 dependent cocaine users as well as in 68 psychostimulant-naïve controls at baseline. Additionally, three closely related personality dimensions from the Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI)-cooperativeness, (social) reward dependence, and self-directedness-and the screening questionnaire of the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis II Personality Disorders (SCID-II) were acquired. At the one-year follow-up, 57 cocaine users and 48 controls were reassessed with the MACH-IV. Finally, MACH-IV scores were correlated with measures of social cognition and interaction (cognitive/emotional empathy, Theory-of-Mind, prosocial behavior) and with SCID-II PD scores assessed at baseline. Both recreational and dependent cocaine users showed significantly higher Machiavellianism than controls, while dependent cocaine users additionally displayed significantly lower levels of TCI cooperativeness and self-directedness. During the one-year interval, MACH-IV scores showed high test-retest reliability and also the significant gap between cocaine users and controls remained. Moreover, in cocaine users, higher Machiavellianism correlated significantly with lower levels of cooperativeness and self-directedness, with less prosocial behavior, and with higher cluster B PD scores. However, Machiavellianism was not correlated with measures of cocaine use severity (r<-.15). Both recreational and dependent cocaine users display pronounced and stable Machiavellian personality traits. The lack of correlations with severity of cocaine use and its temporal stability indicates that a Machiavellian personality trait might represent a predisposition for cocaine use that potentially serves as a predictor for stimulant addiction.
Project description:Research on the structure of personality disorders (PDs) has relied primarily on exploratory analyses to evaluate trait-based models of the factors underlying the covariation of these disorders. This study used confirmatory factor analysis to evaluate whether a model that included both PD traits and a general personality dysfunction factor would account for the comorbidity of the PDs better than a trait-only model. It also examined if the internalizing/externalizing model of psychopathology, developed previously through research on the structure of Axis I disorders, might similarly account for the covariation of the Axis II disorders in a sample of 245 veterans and nonveterans with posttraumatic stress disorder. Results indicated that the best fitting model was a modified bifactor structure composed of nine lower-order common factors. These factors indexed pathology ranging from aggression to dependency, with the correlations among them accounted for by higher-order Internalizing and Externalizing factors. Further, a general factor, reflecting a construct that we termed boundary disturbance, accounted for additional variance and covariance across nearly all the indicators. The Internalizing, Externalizing, and Boundary Disturbance factors evidenced differential associations with trauma-related covariates. These findings suggest continuity in the underlying structure of psychopathology across DSM-IV Axes I and II and provide empirical evidence of a pervasive, core disturbance in the boundary between self and other across the PDs.