Original ArticlesA Valence-Dependent Group-Specific Recall Bias of Retrospective Self-Reports A Study of Borderline Personality Disorder in Everyday LifeEbner-Priemer, Ulrich W. PhD*; Kuo, Janice MA†; Welch, Stacy Shaw PhD†; Thielgen, Tanja MA*; Witte, Steffen PhD‡; Bohus, Martin MD*; Linehan, Marsha M. PhD†Author Information *Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy, Central Institute of Mental Health, Mannheim, Germany; †Department of Psychology, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington; and ‡Department of Medical Biometry, University of Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany. This research was supported by a grant (Bo 1487/4-1) from the German Research Society, a grant from the Royalty Research Fund, University of Washington, the Borderline Personality Disorder Research Foundation, and the Swiss National Foundation (scholarship). Send reprint requests to Ulrich W. Ebner-Priemer, PhD, Central Institute of Mental Health, Postfach 12 21 20, 68072 Mannheim, Germany. E-mail: [email protected]. The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease: October 2006 - Volume 194 - Issue 10 - p 774-779 doi: 10.1097/01.nmd.0000239900.46595.72 Buy Metrics Abstract Recall is an active reconstruction process likely to distort past experiences. This distortion, known as recall bias, seems to manifest itself differently in sick and healthy people. A recall bias has been documented in several disorders, but never investigated in borderline personality disorder (BPD). To determine recall bias in BPD, we assessed momentary and retrospective ratings of specific emotions in 50 patients with BPD and 50 healthy controls (HCs), using the methodology of 24-hour ambulatory monitoring. Our data reveal a group-specific valence-dependent recall bias of retrospective self-report, indicated by a different overall recall pattern in HCs and BPD. BPD patients show an overall negative recall pattern, whereas HCs show a positive recall pattern. A traditional questionnaire approach does not distinguish between symptoms of the disorder and recall bias, although the pathological mechanisms underlying them as well as the appropriate treatment strategies may be different. © 2006 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.