Is dimensional scoring of borderline personality disorder important only for subthreshold levels of severity?

Journal of personality disorders (Impact Factor: 3.08). 04/2013; 27(2):244-51. DOI: 10.1521/pedi.2013.27.2.244
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Studies comparing dimensional and categorical representations of personality disorders (PDs) have consistently found that PD dimensions are more reliable and valid. While comparisons of dimensional and categorical scoring approaches have consistently favored the dimension model, two reports from the Rhode Island Methods to Improve Diagnostic Assessment and Services (MIDAS) project have raised questions as to when dimensional scoring is important. In the first study, Asnaani, Chelminski, Young, and Zimmerman (2007) found that once the diagnostic threshold for borderline PD was reached the number of criteria met was not significantly associated with indices of psychosocial morbidity. In the second study, Zimmerman, Chelminski, Young, Dalrymple, and Martinez (2012) found that patients with 1 criterion of borderline PD had significantly more psychosocial morbidity than patients with 0 criteria. The findings of these two studies suggest that dimensional ratings of borderline PD may be more strongly associated with indicators of illness severity for patients who do not versus do meet the DSM-IV criteria for borderline PD. In this third report from the MIDAS project, we tested this hypothesis in a study of 3,069 psychiatric outpatients evaluated with semi-structured diagnostic interviews. In the patients without borderline PD the number of borderline features was significantly associated with each of 6 indicators of illness severity, whereas in the patients with borderline PD 3 of the 6 correlations were significant. The mean correlation between the number of borderline PD criteria and the indicators of illness severity was nearly three times higher in the patients without borderline PD than the patients with borderline PD (0.23 versus 0.08), and 4 of the 6 correlation coefficients were significantly higher in the patients without borderline PD. These findings suggest that dimensional scoring of borderline PD is more important for subthreshold levels of pathology and are less critical once a patient meets the diagnostic threshold. The implications of these findings for DSM-5 are discussed.

1 Bookmark
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This review summarizes recent neurocognitive research to better delineate the nosology, prognostication and cause underlying borderline personality disorder (BPD). BPD had marked clinical heterogeneity with high comorbidity. Executive dysfunction in this disorder was linked to suicidality and treatment adherence, and may serve as an endophenotype. BPD was also characterized by cognitive distortions such as risky decision-making, deficient feedback processing, dichotomous thinking, jumping to conclusion, monocausal attribution and paranoid cognitive style. Social cognition deficits recently described in BPD include altered social inference and emotional empathy, hypermentalization, poorer facial emotional recognition and facial expressions. In electrophysiological studies, BPD was found to have predominantly right hemispheric deficit in high-order cortical inhibition. Reduced left orbitofrontal activity by visual evoked potential and magnetoencephalography correlated with depressive symptoms and functional deterioration. Brain structures implicated in BPD include the hippocampus, dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and anterior cingulate cortex. Abnormal anatomy and functioning of frontolimbic circuitry appear to correlate with cognitive deficits. Frontolimbic structural and functional abnormalities underlie the broad array of cognitive abnormalities in BPD. Further research should espouse broader considerations of effects of comorbidity and clinical heterogeneity, and include community samples and, possibly, longitudinal designs.
    Current opinion in psychiatry 01/2013; 26(1):90-6. · 3.55 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: We conducted a secondary analysis of data from a clinical trial to explore the relationship between degree of personality disorder (PD) pathology (i.e., number of subthreshold and threshold PD symptoms) and mood and functioning outcomes in Bipolar I Disorder (BD-I). Ninety-two participants completed baseline mood and functioning assessments and then underwent 4 months of treatment for an index manic, mixed, or depressed phase acute episode. Additional assessments occurred over a 28-month follow-up period. PD pathology did not predict psychosocial functioning or manic symptoms at 4 or 28 months. However, it did predict depressive symptoms at both timepoints, as well as percent time symptomatic. Clusters A and C pathology were most strongly associated with depression. Our findings fit with the literature highlighting the negative repercussions of PD pathology on a range of outcomes in mood disorders. This study builds upon previous research, which has largely focused on major depression and which has primarily taken a categorical approach to examining PD pathology in BD.
    Depression research and treatment 01/2014; 2014:816524.