Characteristics of American Assaultive Psychiatric Patients: Review of Published Findings, 20002012



Raymond B. Flannery Jr., Grace Wyshak, Joseph J. Tecce, Georgina J. Flannery

Psychiatric Quarterly

March 2014




Previous reviews of the literature from 1976 to 2000 documented two categories of assaultive psychiatric patients: (1) male patients with schizophrenic illness and histories of violence toward others and substance use disorder and (2) male/female patients with personality disorders and histories of violence toward others, personal victimization, and substance use. The present study reviewed the published findings on American assaultive patients from 2000 to 2012. The present findings partially supported the earlier findings in that patients with schizophrenic illness continued to present the greatest risk for assault. However, personality disordered patients were not equal in assault risk to patients with affective disorders. Possible explanations for these findings and a detailed methodological review are presented.