Personality disorder and self-rated health: A population-based cross-sectional survey

Marcella Fok*, Matthew Hotopf, Robert Stewart, Stephani Hatch, Richard Hayes, Paul Moran

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Little is known about the impact of personality disorder (PD) on the health of people living in the community. The authors set out to examine the association between PD and general health, using a cross-sectional survey of a representative community sample in London, UK. A total of 1,698 adults aged 16 years or over from 1,075 randomly selected households were recruited and interviewed face-to-face by trained interviewers. Using multivariable logistic regression, the authors examined the cross-sectional association between PD screen status, as assessed by the Standardised As­sessment of Personality-Abbreviated Scale (SAPAS), and self-rated health, adjusting for demographic and health covariates. Of the participants, 14.5% screened positively for PD. A greater proportion of those scoring positively for PD reported poor self-rated health, compared to screen nega­tive participants (41.3% versus 15.0%). This association was reduced, but remained significant, after adjustment for potential confounders (unad­justed odds ratio (OR) = 3.99, 95% Cl [2.93, 5.42]; fully adjusted OR = 1.53, 95% Cl 11.02, 2.29|. Of note, subthreshold symptoms of PD were significantly associated with poor self-rated health (unadjusted OR per unit SAPAS score increment = 1.53, 95% Cl [1.40, 1.67]; fully adjusted OR =1.19, 95% Cl 11.07, 1.33]. Furthermore, people screening positive for PD were more likely to report multiple (three or more) long-standing illnesses. The authors conclude that in the general population, individuals who are at high risk for PD are independently at increased risk of poor general health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)319-333
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Personality Disorders
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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