Objective: Current limitations to diagnosing and measuring the personality disorders encouraged a set of studies seeking to provide an alternate approach to modeling and measuring disordered personality function. Method: A large set of self-reported descriptors of disordered personality function were factor analyzed in a sample of patients with clinician-diagnosed personality dysfunction, generating 11 lower-order and two higher-order constructs. Subjects and non-clinical controls also completed a measure of personality styles underpinning formalized personality disorder groupings. Properties of the refined self-report (SR) measure were assessed in an independent sample of patients with a clinically diagnosed personality disorder. Results: Limitations in 'cooperativeness' and 'coping' formed the higher-order constructs defining disordered personality function, with these constructs relevant to all personality styles. Analyses of SR, corroborative witness (CW) and clinician-rated data in an independent sample supported measuring disordered personality function by our derived 20-item SR measure, and exposed limitations to clinician-based assessment. Conclusion: Study findings build to a multi-axial strategy for measuring personality disorder, involving separate dimensional assessment of both disordered personality function and of personality style.
- Disordered functioning
- Personality disorder