disorder was previously known as both psychopathic and Sociopathic
personality disorder. Like
most personality disorders, there are many factors that may
contribute to the development of symptoms. Because the
symptoms are long lasting, the idea that symptoms begin to
emerge in childhood or at least adolescence is well
accepted. The negative consequences of such symptoms,
however, may not show themselves until adulthood.
has shown that a large percentage of individuals with this
disorder have recognizable behaviors prior to age 15.
These behaviors include difficulty with authority, legal
altercations, cruelty to animals, fire setting, and a dislike
or anger toward authority. This disorder is diagnosed
much more frequently in males.
symptoms of antisocial personality disorder include a
longstanding pattern (after the age of 15) of disregard for
the rights of others. There is a failure
to conform to society's norms and expectations that often
results in numerous arrests or legal involvement as well as a
history of deceitfulness where the individual attempts to con
people or use trickery for personal profit.
Impulsiveness if often present, including angry outbursts,
failure to consider consequences of behaviors, irritability,
and/or physical assaults.
argue that a major component of this disorder is the reduced
ability to feel empathy for other people. This inability
to see the hurts, concerns, and other feelings of people often
results in a disregard for these aspects of human
interaction. Finally, irresponsible behavior often
accompanies this disorder as well as a lack of remorse for
for this disorder is very rarely sought. There is a
limited amount of insight into the symptoms, and the negative
consequences are often blamed on society. In this sense,
treatment options are limited. Some research has found
long term insight oriented therapy to be effective, but
getting the individual to commit to this treatment is a major
is not very good because of two contributing factors.
First, because the disorder is characterized by a failure to
conform to society's norms, people with this disorder are
often incarcerated because of criminal behavior.
Secondly, a lack of insight into the disorder is very
common. People with antisocial personality disorder
typically see the world as having the problems, not him or
herself, and therefore rarely seek treatment. If
progress is made, it is typically over an extended period of