A pervasive pattern
of excessive emotionality and attention seeking, beginning by early
adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by five
(or more) of the following:
is uncomfortable in situations in which he or she is not the center
others is often characterized by inappropriate sexually seductive
or provocative behavior.
shifting and shallow expression of emotions.
physical appearance to draw attention to self.
Has a style of
speech that is excessively impressionistic and lacking in detail.
theatricality, and exaggerated expression of emotion.
i.e., easily influenced by others or circumstances.
to be more intimate than they actually are.
Somatic or Sexual
Anxious or Fearful or Dependent
Dramatic or Erratic or
have similar or even the same symptom. The clinician, therefore, in
his diagnostic attempt has to differentiate against the following
disorders which he needs to rule out to establish a precise diagnosis.
Personality Change Due to a General Medical Condition
Symptoms that may develop in association with chronic substance
The cause of this
disorder is unknown, but childhood events and genetics may both be
involved. It occurs more frequently in women than in men, although
some feel it is simply more often diagnosed in women because attention-seeking
and sexual forwardness is less socially acceptible for women.
People with this
disorder are usually able to function at a high level and can be successful
socially and at work. They may seek treatment for depression when
romantic relationships end.
They often fail
to see their own situation realistically, instead tending to overdramatize
and exaggerate. Responsibility for failure or disappointment is usually
blamed on others.
Treatment is often
prompted by depression associated with dissolved romantic relationships.
Medication does little to affect this personality disorder, but may
be helpful with symptoms such as depression. Psychotherapy may also
be of benefit.
and Psychotherapy [ See
Therapy Section ]:
suffer from this disorder are usually difficult to treat for a multitude
of reasons. As with most personality disorders, people present for
treatment only when stress or some other situational factor within
their lives has made their ability to function and cope effectively
impossible. They are, however (unlike other people who suffer from
personality disorders), much quicker to seek treatment and exaggerate
their symptoms and difficulties in functioning. Because they also
tend to be more emotionally needy, they are often reluctant to terminate
Psychopharmacology Section ] :
As with most personality
disorders, medications are not indicated except for the treatment
of specific, concurrent Axis I diagnoses. Care should be given when
prescribing medications to someone who suffers from histrionic personality
disorder, though, because of the potential for using the medication
to contribute to self-destructive or otherwise harmful behaviors.
Personality Disorder Links