Little is known about the neurobiological correlates of stress-related disorders. In particular almost nothing is known about biological correlates of specific personality disorders that have been linked to stress. We measured heart rate and blood pressure reactivity in response to personalized traumatic scripts together with subjective psychological ratings in four women with a history of childhood abuse with no disorder, Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, Borderline Personality Disorder, and Histrionic Personality Disorder. Psychophysiology as well as subjective ratings differed markedly between the four women, with elevated reactions found in PTSD and histrionic personality, and extreme decline in physiological reactivity associated with a dissociative response in the borderline patient. It is concluded that reactivity to traumatic reminders can be correlated with the existence of different stress-related diagnoses. Personality characteristics seem to have an influence on psychophysiological reactivity in patients with stress-related psychiatric disorders. Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.