Narcissistic personality disorder

by Dr Andrew Williams and Dr Jessica Yakeley


Published: August 2019


Narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) often remains undiagnosed despite the fact that the disorder usually causes significant suffering to patients and their families.


People with NPD often present to services following acts of harm towards themselves or others, or with coexisting addiction, depression or anxiety disorders. As with the relationship between deliberate self-harm and borderline personality disorder, being able to understand the individual's presentation as symptomatic of a particular form of personality disorder can be immensely helpful for the treating clinician. Diagnosing problematic narcissistic traits or personality disorder can enhance the therapeutic relationship, aid risk assessment and help determine appropriate management.


As well as enabling you to recognise the key features of NPD, this module will develop your understanding of how a diagnosis of NPD can affect the way in which patients relate to services. We will also look at the recognised treatments for NPD and their effectiveness.


Start the module


This module is a joint commission with the following article published in BJPsych Advances:

Yakeley J (2018) Current understanding of narcissism and narcissistic personality disorder. BJPsych Advances, 24: 305–315. [abstract]


© 2021 Royal College of Psychiatrists