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Young ‘Psychopaths’ in Special Hospital: Treatment and Outcome

  • D. Reiss (a1), D. Grubin (a2) and C. Meux (a3)

The ‘Young Persons Unit’ (YPU) at Broadmoor Hospital offers psychotherapeutic treatment for young adult male patients. The study objective was to report background details, treatment and outcome of the ward's personality disordered patients.


The sample consisted of 49 patients, with the legal classification of psychopathic disorder, treated on the unit for at least one year. Data were collected from existing case records. Outcome was recorded until discharge from statutory supervision. Outcome measures were recidivism and a variety of social factors.


At follow-up 10 patients had reoffended, with four having committed serious violent or sexual offences. Two patients had died. A history of sex offending was the strongest predictor of subsequent reoffending. No patients with good social outcome reoffended.


Young patients with personality disorder can be successfully treated on the YPU. The management of sex offenders in this group requires further attention. Successful social integration within the community after discharge may help prevent future reoffending.

Corresponding author
Dr David Reiss, Department of Forensic Psychiatry, Institute of Psychiatry, Denmark Hill, London SE5 8AF
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The British Journal of Psychiatry
  • ISSN: 0007-1250
  • EISSN: 1472-1465
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Young ‘Psychopaths’ in Special Hospital: Treatment and Outcome

  • D. Reiss (a1), D. Grubin (a2) and C. Meux (a3)
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