Association Patterns of Antisocial Personality Disorder across Substance Use Disorders

medRxiv. 2023 Sep 15:2023.09.15.23295625. doi: 10.1101/2023.09.15.23295625. Preprint


There is a high prevalence of antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) in individuals affected by substance use disorders (SUD). However, there is limited information on the specific patterns of association of ASPD with SUD severity and specific SUD diagnostic criteria. We investigated the association of alcohol, cannabis, cocaine, opioid, and tobacco use disorders (AUD, CanUD, CocUD, OUD, and TUD, respectively) in 1,660 individuals with ASPD and 6,640 controls matched by sex (24% female), age, and racial/ethnic background in a sample ascertained for addiction-related traits. Generalized linear regressions were used to test the association of ASPD with the five DSM-5 SUD diagnoses, their severity (i.e., mild, moderate, severe), and their individual diagnostic criteria. We found that ASPD is associated with the diagnosis and severity of AUD (Odds Ratio, ORs=1.89 and 1.25), CanUD (ORs=2.13 and 1.32), and TUD (ORs=1.50 and 1.21) ( ps <.003). Of the specific diagnostic criteria, the "hazardous use" criterion showed the strongest association with ASPD across the five SUDs investigated (from OR TUD =1.88 to OR CanUD =1.37). However, when criteria of different SUDs were included in the same model, ASPD was independently associated only with TUD "hazardous use" and CocUD "attempts to quit". Attempting to quit cocaine was inversely related to the presence of ASPD and remained significant (OR=0.57, 95% confidence interval = 0.36-0.89) after controlling for interactive effects with sex. The current work provides novel insights into how different SUDs, their severity, and their diagnostic criteria associate with ASPD, potentially furthering our understanding of the impact of polysubstance addiction on mental health.

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