Relationships of neuroticism and extraversion with axis I and II comorbidity among patients with DSM-IV major depressive disorder.J Affect Disord. 2009 Apr; 114(1-3):110-21.JA
High comorbidity with axis I and II disorders among major depressive disorder (MDD) patients may in part be due to the predisposing personality dimensions of neuroticism and extraversion. However, a comprehensive view of this relationship is lacking.
MDD patients (n=193) in the Vantaa Depression Study were interviewed at baseline and at 6 and 18 months with the SCAN and SCID-II, and a general population comparison group (n=388) surveyed by mail. Neuroticism and extraversion were measured with the Eysenck Personality Inventory. A dose-exposure relationship between standardized levels of neuroticism and extraversion and type and number of comorbid axis I and II disorders among patients with MDD was hypothesized.
Prevalence and number of comorbid axis I and II disorders increased significantly with increasing level of neuroticism. In contrast, as the level of extraversion increased, the prevalences of social phobia and cluster C personality disorders decreased. Patients with pure MDD or with any comorbid axis I or II disorder had z-scores of neuroticism of +0.46, +0.90 and +1.30 and of extraversion of -0.34, -0.47 and -0.84, respectively.
Patients' personality scores were not pre-morbid.
Among MDD patients, a positive dose-exposure relationship appears to exist between neuroticism and prevalence and number of comorbid axis I and II disorders. A negative relationship exists between level of extraversion and prevalence of social phobia and cluster C personality disorders. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that high neuroticism and low extraversion predispose to comorbid axis I and II disorders among patients with MDD.