Purpose of review: The purpose of this paper is to review the most recent literature on personality disorders.
Recent findings: Recent data suggest that individual personality disorder criteria and full diagnosis may remit within 1–2 years. The same line of evidence disputes the separation of axis I and axis II disorders and suggests the presence of a continuum. Neuropsychological, neurobiological and genetic studies favor the presence of cognitive disorders and a non-specific mode of hereditability concerning all externalizing disorders. How to best treat personality disorders remains elusive. The most impressive news in the forensic field concerns the introduction of a new concept, dangerous and severe personality disorder by the UK government, for prevention and treatment purposes.
Summary: The most recent data do not adequately support a separate axis II. Future classification may need to move personality disorders to axis I, each under a suitable group of diseases and eliminate the very term ‘personality’ from the nomenclature, since it constitutes an empirically unsupported theoretical invasion in a system supposed to be ‘atheoretical’.