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Borderline Personality Disorder Diagnosis and Symptoms in Outpatient Youth as Risk Factors for Criminal Offenses and Interpersonal Violence

Published Online:https://doi.org/10.1521/pedi_2021_35_503

The aim of the current study was to examine the risk for offending among outpatient youth with borderline pathology. Demographic and diagnostic data from 492 outpatients who attended a public mental health service for 15-to 25-year-olds between January 1998 and March 2008 were linked with information regarding criminal offenses and intervention orders collected from a statewide police database between March 1993 and June 2017. BPD diagnosis and number of BPD criteria were both associated with an elevated risk for violent and nonviolent offenses and family violence intervention orders. Moderation analyses revealed that the number of BPD criteria might affect males and females differently in terms of offending. Both impulsivity and anger independently predicted the risk for violent and nonviolent offenses and family violence intervention orders. Early detection of increased risk of offending among youth with BPD features is essential to develop targeted treatments for criminal or violent behavior.

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