Document Type


Publication Date

February 2006

Journal or Book Title

Psychiatric Services






OBJECTIVE: This study examined the utilization of mental health treatments over a three-year period among patients with schizotypal, borderline, avoidant, or obsessive-compulsive personality disorders compared with patients with major depressive disorder and no personality disorder.

METHODS: A prospective, longitudinal study design was used to measure treatment use for 633 individuals aged 18 to 45 years during a three-year period.

RESULTS: Patients with borderline personality disorder were significantly more likely than those with major depressive disorder to use most types of treatment. Furthermore, all patients continued using high-intensity, low-duration treatments throughout the study period, whereas individual psychotherapy attendance declined significantly after one year.

CONCLUSIONS: Although our data showed that patients with borderline personality disorder used more mental health services than those with major depressive disorder, many questions remain about the adequacy of the treatment received by all patients with personality disorders.