To examine the rate of persistence of borderline personality disorder (BPD), the existence of concomitant personality disorders on follow-up, and the predictors of outcome in patients who met criteria for BPD compared with patients with borderline features who failed to meet all of the criteria.
This prospective cohort study reassessed subjects for BPD diagnosis and cooccurring personality pathology at 7 years follow-up. Initial measures of borderline and comorbid personality psychopathology were used to predict levels of borderline or other personality disorder psychopathology at follow-up.
Of the 5 7 subjects who initially met the criteria for BPD, 30 (52.6%) were found to have remitted BPD, and 27 (47.4%) were characterized as having persistent BPD. The remitted group met significantly fewer comorbid personality disorder diagnoses than the persistent group (mean = 0.8, mean = 3.5 respectively; P < 0.05). Results also indicated that the initial level of borderline psychopathology was predictive of borderline psychopathology at follow-up, which explained 17% of the variance.
This prospective follow-up study found that almost 50% of former inpatients with BPD continue to test positive for BPD at 7 years follow-up, and these persistent BPD patients also had significantly more comorbid personality psychopathology. Borderline psychopathology at follow-up was primarily predicted by the level of borderline psychopathology recorded at the initial assessment.