Avoidant Personality Disorder: a Current Review


This review focuses on recent research on diagnostic aspects, etiology, and treatment of avoidant personality disorder (AVPD). Current studies stress the close relation between AVPD and social anxiety disorder, the influence of genetic factors in the development of AVPD, and the relative stability of symptoms. Treatment approaches should target the pervasive patterns of social inhibition, feelings of inadequacy, and hypersensitivity to negative evaluation. Empirical evidence for cognitive-behavior and schema therapy is promising. Few other therapeutic approaches have been developed, but until now, these have only been investigated in case studies. We conclude that AVPD qualifies as a neglected disorder and that more research specifically on avoidant personality disorder symptoms and its treatment is needed.

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Correspondence to Anna Weinbrecht.

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Weinbrecht, A., Schulze, L., Boettcher, J. et al. Avoidant Personality Disorder: a Current Review. Curr Psychiatry Rep 18, 29 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11920-016-0665-6

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  • Avoidant personality disorder
  • Diagnostic
  • Etiology
  • Psychotherapy