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Psychiatry Res. 2011 Feb 28;185(3):427-32. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2010.07.002. Epub 2010 Jul 27.

Characterizing eating disorders in a personality disorders sample.

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Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences, The University of Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA.


The presence of a comorbid eating disorder (ED) and personality disorder (PD) is associated with greater problems and poorer functioning than having an ED alone or PD alone. This pattern is also found for non-ED axis I disorders and PDs. This study aims to examine if an ED, compared to other non-ED axis I disorders, in a PD sample confers greater risks for: number and type of non-ED axis I and axis II disorders, suicide attempts and non-suicidal self-injury, and poorer psychosocial functioning. Standardized interviews were conducted on 166 females and 166 males with PDs. In females with PDs, EDs, as compared to other axis I disorders, were associated with more non-ED axis I and II disorders (particularly borderline and avoidant PD) and poorer global functioning, but not with suicide attempts or non-suicidal self-injury. In males with PDs, EDs were associated with more axis II disorders, particularly borderline PD. Given the small group of males with EDs, these results require replication. Males and females with PDs and EDs may have multiple comorbid disorders, particularly borderline PD and for females, avoidant PD that may warrant targeting in treatment.

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