Treatment of Borderline Personality Disorder

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Toalson, Shannon
Washburn University
Department of Psychology
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The following is a de-identified case study that presents the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) utilizing Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT). Names and other identifying information have been changed to protect the client’s privacy. The name “Erin” is used in place of the client’s real name. At the time of treatment, this 64-year-old Caucasian woman was struggling to manage anger and interpersonal relationships. In addition, Erin reported suicidal ideation and has a history of three suicide attempts. Erin was administered a diagnostic interview and various screening measures to aid in diagnosis. A combination of a primary diagnosis of BPD with secondary diagnoses of Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) were determined to capture Erin’s presenting symptoms most accurately. The client attended 40 treatment sessions working with a student intern therapist. Treatment sessions targeted life-threatening behaviors, therapyinterfering behaviors, quality-of-life interfering behaviors, and skills acquisition and generalization. Pre-to-post and ongoing assessment and mood tracking indicate Erin would benefit from continuing treatment to manage patterns of interpersonal conflict, impulsive behaviors, and suicide risk.
Case Study