There is a pervasive
pattern of disregard for and violation of the rights of others occurring
since age 18 years, as indicated by three (or more) of the following:
Failure to conform to social norms with respect to lawful behaviors
as indicated by repeatedly performing acts that are grounds for arrest.
indicated by repeated lying, use of aliases, or conning others for
personal profit or pleasure
impulsivity or failure to plan ahead.
aggressiveness, as indicated by repeated physical fights or assaults
reckless disregard for safety of self or others.
as indicated by repeated failure to sustain consistent work behavior
or honor financial obligations.
Lack of remorse,
as indicated by being indifferent to or rationalizing having hurt,
mistreated, or stolen from another
The individual is at least 18 years old (under 18 see Conduct Disorder
). There is evidence of Conduct Disorder with onset before age 15
years and the
occurrence of antisocial behavior is not exclusively during the course
of Schizophrenia or a Manic Episode
Dramatic or Erratic or Antisocial Personality.
have similar symptoms. The clinician, therefore, in his diagnostic
attempt has to differentiate against the following disorders which
need to be ruled out to establish a precise diagnosis.
Adult Antisocial Behavior.
The cause of this
disorder is unknown, but biological or genetic factors may play a
role. The incidence of antisocial personality is higher in people
who have an antisocial biological parents. Although the diagnosis
is limited to those over 18 years of age, there is usually a history
of similar behaviors before age 15, such as repetitive lying, truancy,
delinquency, and substance abuse. This disorder tends to occur more
often in men and in people whose predominant role model had antisocial
Twin studies have
confirmed the hereditability of antisocial behaviour in adults and
shown that genetic factors are more important in adults than in antisocial
children or adolescents where shared environmental factors are more
important. (Lyons et a11995)
Cadoret et al
(1995) studied the family environment as well as the parentage of
adoptees separated at birth from parents. Antisocial Personality Disorder
in the biological parents predicted antisocial disorder in the adopted
away children. However, adverse factors in the adoptive environment
(for example, "marital problems or substance abuse) independently
predicted adult antisocial behaviours.
and Psychotherapy [ See
Therapy Section ]:
of antisocial behavior and personality is limited. Group psychotherapy
can be helpful. If the person can develop a sense of trust, individual
psychotherapy or cognitive behavioral therapy can also be beneficial.
There is no research that supports the use of medications for direct
treatment of antisocial personality disorder, though.
treatment for this disorder is limited. It is likely, though, that
intensive, psychoanalytic approaches are inappropriate for this population.
Approaches the reinforce appropriate behaviors and attempting to make
connections between the person's actions and their feelings may be
more beneficial. Emotions are usually a key aspect of treatment of
this disorder. Patients often have had little or no significant emotionally-rewarding
relationships in their lives. The therapeutic relationship, therefore,
can be one of the first ones. This can be very scary for the client,
initially, and it may become intolerable. A close therapeutic relationship
can only occur when a good and solid rapport has been established
with the client and he or she can trust the therapist implicitly.
Psychopharmacology Section ] :
only be utilized to treat clear, acute and serious Axis I concurrent
diagnoses. No research has suggested that any medication is effective
in the treatment of this disorder.
[ See Self-Hep Section
for the treatment of this disorder are often overlooked by the medical
profession because very few professionals are involved in them. Groups
can be especially helpful for people with this disorder, if they are
tailored specifically for antisocial personality disorder. Individuals
with this disorder typically feel more at ease in discussing their
feelings and behaviors in front of their peers in this type of supportive
Personality Disorder Links