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Personality Disorders and Depressive Symptoms in Late Luteal Phase Dysphoric Disorder

De Ronchi D. · Muro A. · Marziani A. · Rucci P.
Institute of Psychiatry, University of Bologna, Italy Psychother Psychosom 2000;69:27–34 (DOI:10.1159/000012363)


Background: Although many significant studies of late luteal phase dysphoric disorder (LLPD) have been carried out, some conflicting findings on the relationships between personality disorders, depressive symptoms, hostility and LLPD deserve further investigation. Methods: Forty-three LLPD patients and 85 control subjects, evaluated by prospective daily ratings during two symptomatic cycles, received a detailed psychiatric evaluation, including the sections for psychotic, affective and anxiety disorders of the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-III-R nonpatient version and the section for personality disorders; the Buss Durkee Inventory for Assessing Different Kinds of Hostility and the Montgomery-Åsberg Depression Rating Scale. Results: The odds of suffering from LLPD are about nine-fold (crude odds ratio, OR = 9.23, 95% confidence interval, CI 3.98–21.39) among women with mild or moderate depressive symptoms. When two age strata (below and above 30) are analyzed separately, the association between LLPD and depressive symptoms is strong and positive in both strata, while the association between LLPD and avoidant personality disorder is found only among older women (adjusted OR = 8.26, p < 0.05, 95% CI 1.03–66.35). Conclusions: The major finding from this preliminary study is the association between LLPD and depressive symptoms. Conversely, the association between LLPD and avoidant personality disorder remains controversial and seems to be dependent on age. Our findings support the hypothesis that LLPD and avoidant personality disorder may be considered as part of the spectrum of recurrent mood disorder rather than as qualitatively distinct nosological entities. Future studies are needed, adopting prospective, longitudinal assessments of personality prior to the onset of LLPD.

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