This research was supported in part by National Institute of Mental Health Grant OCR 38 M#38896A. We thank the physicians and nurses who so generously referred patients and/or provided medical information, especially Dr. Michael Aminoffof the University of California at San Francisco. We thank, too, the members of the community sample and especially the patients and their spouses. Useful comments and suggestions to drafts of this article were made by Ravenna Helson, Oliver John, and Corinne Kosmitzki.
Personality Change in Parkinson's Disease Patients: Chronic Disease and Aging
Article first published online: 28 APR 2006
Journal of Personality
Volume 63, Issue 2, pages 233–257, June 1995
How to Cite
Mendelsohn, G. A., Dakof, G. A. and Skaff, M. (1995), Personality Change in Parkinson's Disease Patients: Chronic Disease and Aging. Journal of Personality, 63: 233–257. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-6494.1995.tb00809.x
- Issue published online: 28 APR 2006
- Article first published online: 28 APR 2006
- Manuscript received February 2, 1993; revised December 20, 1993.
Parkinson's disease patients (N= 41, mean age = 65 years) were described by themselves and their spouses as they were presently and before their illness using the Adjective Check List. Equivalent self- and spouse descriptions were obtained from the members of a matched community sample (N= 96). Descriptions of patients and their spouses converged, both reporting sharp, pervasive (e.g., on all of the Big Five dimensions), and uniformly negative change in personality. Similar, but much less marked change was found in the community sample. The data as a set suggest that the reported changes in the patients were veridical and that their magnitude was primarily the result of the disease rather than aging. Evidence of continuities in personality (for example, differential stability) was also noted. We argue that the illness accelerated and intensified changes normally expected in later life.