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Definition of Antisocial personality disorder

Antisocial personality disorder: A pervasive pattern of disregard for and violation of the rights of others and inability or unwillingness to conform to what are considered to be the norms of society.

The disorder involves a history of chronic antisocial behavior that begins before the age of 15 and continues into adulthood. The disorder is manifested by a pattern of irresponsible and antisocial behavior as indicated by academic failure, poor job performance, illegal activities, recklessness, and impulsive behavior. Symptoms may include dysphoria, an inability to tolerate boredom, feeling victimized, and a diminished capacity for intimacy.

Antisocial personality disorder, also known as psychopathic personality or sociopathic personality often brings a person into conflict with society as a consequence of a pattern of behavior that is amoral and unethical. Complications that might arise from having this disorder include: frequent imprisonment for unlawful behavior, alcoholism and drug abuse.

Samson may, it is thought, have had antisocial personality disorder. The Bible tells of his lies to his parents, his cruelty to animals, his torching the Philistine fields, his frequent brawls, and his unremitting bragging after killing a thousand men, actions fitting the diagnosis of antisocial personality disorder. A person with antisocial personality disorder was once called a sociopath.

Source: MedTerms™ Medical Dictionary
http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=39219
Last Editorial Review: 6/14/2012

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