Relationship between personality disorder dimensions and verbal memory functioning in a community population

Psychiatry Res. 2012 Mar 30;196(1):109-14. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2011.08.012. Epub 2012 Feb 16.


Based on the Baltimore Epidemiologic Catchment Area (ECA) follow-up survey, we examined relationships between dimensions of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) personality disorders and both subjective and objective memory functioning in a community population. Our study subjects consisted of 736 individuals from the ECA follow-up study of the original Baltimore ECA cohort, conducted between 1993 and 1996 and available for assessment in the Hopkins Epidemiology Study of Personality Disorders from 1997 to 1999. Subjects were assessed for DSM-IV personality disorders using a semi-structured instrument, the International Personality Disorder Examination, and were asked about a subjective appraisal of memory. Verbal memory function, including immediate recall, delayed recall, and recognition, were also evaluated. Multiple linear regression analyses were used to determine associations between personality dimensions of DSM-IV Axis II traits and subjective and objective memory functioning. Scores on schizoid and schizotypal personality dimensions were associated with subjective and objective memory dysfunction, both with and without adjustment for Axis I disorders. Borderline, antisocial, avoidant, and dependent personality disorder scores were associated with subjective memory impairment only, both with and without adjustment for Axis I disorders. This study suggests that subjective feelings of memory impairment and/or objective memory dysfunction are associated with specific personality disorder dimensions.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Memory Disorders / complications
  • Memory Disorders / psychology*
  • Mental Recall
  • Middle Aged
  • Personality Assessment / statistics & numerical data*
  • Personality Disorders / complications
  • Personality Disorders / psychology*
  • Recognition, Psychology
  • Schizoid Personality Disorder / psychology
  • Schizotypal Personality Disorder / psychology
  • Self Report