Depression and personality traits associated with emotion dysregulation: Correlates of suicide attempts in women with bulimia nervosa

Emily M. Pisetsky, Stephen A. Wonderlich, Ross D. Crosby, Carol B. Peterson, James E. Mitchell, Scott G. Engel, Thomas E. Joiner, Anna Bardone-Cone, Daniel Le Grange, Marjorie H. Klein, Scott J. Crow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective The objective of this study was to identify personality traits and psychiatric comorbidities associated with a lifetime history of a suicide attempt in women with bulimia nervosa (BN). Method Data from two samples of women with BN (n = 204 and n = 133) were examined. Participants in both samples completed the Dimensional Assessment of Personality Pathology - Basic Questionnaire and reported whether they had ever had a lifetime suicide attempt. Comorbid psychopathology was based on self-reported questionnaire and interview data. Univariate and multivariate logistic regression analyses were run, predicting a lifetime suicide attempt. Results Based on the Dimensional Assessment of Personality Pathology - Basic Questionnaire, identity problems were associated with a lifetime suicide attempt in both samples; cognitive dysregulation, anxiousness and insecure attachment were associated with a lifetime suicide attempt in one but not both samples. Lifetime anxiety disorder was associated with a lifetime suicide attempt in one sample, and depression was associated with a lifetime suicide attempt in both samples. Multivariate analyses revealed that only depression was uniquely associated with a lifetime suicide attempt in both samples. Discussion Although personality traits associated with aspects of emotion dysregulation were associated with a lifetime suicide attempt, depression was found to have the strongest association with a lifetime suicide attempt in two samples of women with BN. These findings suggest that depression severity may be the most important target of treatment and suicide prevention efforts in women with BN.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)537-544
Number of pages8
JournalEuropean Eating Disorders Review
Volume23
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2015

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Keywords

  • bulimia nervosa
  • eating disorders
  • suicide

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