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Criterion-related validity and longitudinal functioning of the DSM-5 alternative model pathological personality traits in a clinical sample
Few studies have examined the longitudinal functioning of pathological personality traits (PPTs) as described by the DSM-5 alternative model. The current study described the patterns of stability and change in PPTs over a two-month period among inpatients receiving substance use treatment. We examined temporal measurement invariance in PPTs to determine whether the observed change was true or artifactual. Finally, we examined i) the direction and magnitude of change in PPTs, and ii) their relationship with stability and change in psychological distress. PPTs showed very little differential item functioning over time, suggesting true change in the traits. Latent difference score analyses revealed a decrease in many PPTs over the 2-month treatment period, and initial levels of PPTs were negatively related to degree of change suggesting regression to the mean. Participants decreased on PPT traits related to domains of negative affectivity, detachment, disinhibition, and psychoticism but not antagonism. Bivariate latent difference score analyses indicated that PPT initial levels and difference scores were correlated with those of distress. Data provide support for the clinical utility of the PPTs in detecting short-term change.