Pathological personality traits among patients with absent, current, and remitted substance use disorders. Academic Article uri icon


  • Personality traits may provide underlying risk factors for and/or sequelae to substance use disorders (SUDs). In this study Schedule for Nonadaptive and Adaptive Personality (SNAP) traits were compared in a clinical sample (N=704, age 18-45) with current, past, or no historical alcohol or non-alcohol substance use disorders (AUD and NASUD) as assessed by DSM-IV semi-structured interview. Results corroborated previous research in showing associations of negative temperament and disinhibition to SUD, highlighting the importance of these traits for indicating substance use proclivity or the chronic effects of substance use. Certain traits (manipulativeness, self-harm, disinhibition, and impulsivity for AUD, and disinhibition and exhibitionism for NASUD) were higher among individuals with current relative to past diagnoses, perhaps indicating concurrent effects of substance abuse on personality. The positive temperament characteristics detachment and entitlement distinguished AUDs and NASUDs, respectively, perhaps clarifying why this higher order trait tends to show limited relations to SUD generally. These findings suggest the importance of systematically integrating pathological and normative traits in reference to substance-related diagnosis.

published proceedings

  • Addict Behav

author list (cited authors)

  • Hopwood, C. J., Morey, L. C., Skodol, A. E., Sanislow, C. A., Grilo, C. M., Ansell, E. B., ... Stout, R. L.

citation count

  • 19

complete list of authors

  • Hopwood, Christopher J||Morey, Leslie C||Skodol, Andrew E||Sanislow, Charles A||Grilo, Carlos M||Ansell, Emily B||McGlashan, Thomas H||Markowitz, John C||Pinto, Anthony||Yen, Shirley||Shea, M Tracie||Gunderson, John G||Zanarini, Mary C||Stout, Robert L

publication date

  • January 2011