Across studies in the US, prevalence rates for DSM-IV personality disorders range from 9% to 11.2%. One large-scale community study utilising a structured interview administered by trained lay interviewers obtained a prevalence rate for any personality disorder of 14.79%. However, in the second wave of this study, with stricter criteria applied regarding level of distress or impairment, prevalence rate for any personality disorder was 9.1%. Schizoid personality disorder was found to be more common in men, with schizotypal personality disorder diagnosed equally between men and women. Antisocial personality disorder is more prevalent among men than women; men were also found to have higher rates of disorders in clusters A (odd/eccentric) and B (dramatic) when compared with women. Prevalence of antisocial personality disorder appears to decline with increasing age. This is seen across most other personality disorders, with the exception of avoidant personality disorder. One longitudinal study demonstrated that prevalence rates declined between ages 22 and 33. European studies have found comparable prevalence rates, and higher prevalence rates of cluster B disorders in the younger age group. Prevalence rates for the various clusters range from 1.5% for cluster B to 6.0% for cluster C. Research is limited and inconsistent in terms of differential prevalence rates between various ethnic groups. Application of the impairment criteria prevalence rates for having any personality disorder were found to range from 5.31% for Asian/Native Hawaiian/other Pacific Islander, non-Hispanic people to 17.37% for American Indian/Alaska Native, non-Hispanic people. A review of 15 studies (with 5 considered to be high quality) concluded that prevalence of personality disorder is lower among African-Americans versus white people, and that limited data preclude further conclusions.
BMJ Best Practice is an evidence-based point of care tool for healthcare practitioners.
To continue reading and access all of BMJ Best Practice's pages you'll need to log in or start a free trial.
You can access through your institution if your hospital, university, trust or other institution provides access to BMJ Best Practice through either OpenAthens or Shibboleth.
Use of this content is subject to our disclaimer