3 years ago

Borderline personality disorder symptoms in treatment-naïve actively drinking alcoholics

Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is often a complicating comorbid factor in alcohol use disorders and substance use disorders. Previous work showed that abstinent alcoholics endorsed lifetime and current symptoms of most all BPD criteria at much higher rates than controls, with much higher symptom counts for short-term abstinent alcoholic (STAA) women than men, consistent with such symptoms negatively impacting female alcoholics’ ability to maintain abstinence. Because prior work has also shown that treatment naïve alcoholics (TNA) are not just treated alcoholics observed earlier in their alcohol dependence, but are a different population with potentially lower psychiatric comorbidity, in this study we compared BPD symptom criteria between TNA samples of comparable age to the control and STAA samples, including both men and women and individuals dependent on alcohol only or with lifetime dependence on both alcohol and drugs. BPD symptoms were obtained using the SCID-II, and endorsed symptoms were classified as current or lifetime. Logistic regression analyses were used to test for effects of group, sex, presence of a lifetime drug dependence diagnosis, and their interactions for lifetime and current symptom endorsement for each BPD criteria. Groups were compared pairwise (TNA vs. NSAC, and STAA vs. TNA). The effect of a lifetime drug dependence diagnosis was not significant for any BPD symptom variable, consistent with the alcohol groups’ BPD symptoms being unaffected by the presence of a comorbid drug dependence. The primary result presented here is that TNA women have borderline symptomatology more similar to that of treated STAA than to NSAC, while TNA men have borderline symptomatology more similar to NSAC than to STAA. A visual examination of co-occurring BPD symptoms showed that while more BPD symptoms are likely to be present in TNA and STAA vs. NSAC, there is no grouping of criteria (i.e., symptom cluster) that is characteristic of TNA or STAA.

Publisher URL: www.sciencedirect.com/science

DOI: S0741832917308455

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