Personality predicting relapse: A facet analysis of the NEO PI-R

Zalman Faltushanskiy, Amy A. Herrold, Jasper Werby, Eliza M. Betteridge, Daniel Angres*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background and Objectives: Revised NEO Personality Inventory (NEO PI-R) domains are associated with substance use disorders (SUD), including potential for relapse. However, individual facets of the NEO PI-R domains have not been rigorously analyzed. This paper assesses NEO PI-R individual facets among participants with SUD and their value in predicting relapse. Methods: Between 2015 and 2018, all patients admitted to a single private rehabilitation center (n = 642) were offered participation in this study. Participants who completed NEO PI-R questionnaires at the start of treatment and with known relapse outcomes up to 1-year posttreatment were included (n = 441). Statistical analysis included a series of unadjusted univariate logistic regressions and additional adjusted multivariate regression controlling for employment status in healthcare. Results: Neuroticism, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness domains had significant impacts on relapse. Three individual facets of Neuroticism were significant predictors of relapse, and seven individual facets within the Conscientiousness and Agreeableness domains were inversely related to relapse. When controlling for employment, Conscientiousness and three of its individual facets (Dutifulness, Competence, and Self-Discipline) continued to be significant in predicting relapse. The individual facets Impulsiveness and Straightforwardness also continued to be significant in predicting relapse. Conclusions and Scientific Significance: Several personality domains and facets were significantly related to relapse, confirming and expanding on prior literature. This study focuses on the risk of relapse as it relates to NEO PI-R individual facets, which have not been previously explored with a sample size of this magnitude. These findings can guide clinical care of patients with SUD, allowing for more targeted treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)58-64
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal on Addictions
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2024

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)


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