Treatment is often prompted by depression associated with dissolved romantic relationships. Medication does little to affect the personality disorder, but may be helpful with symptoms such as depression. Treatment for HPD itself involves psychotherapy, including cognitive therapy.
In general clinical practice with assessment of personality disorders, one form of interview is the most popular; an unstructured interview. The actual preferred method is a semi-structured interview but there is reluctance to use this type of interview because they can seem impractical or superficial. The reason that a semi-structured interview is preferred over an unstructured interview is that semi-structured interviews tend to be more objective, systematic, replicable, and comprehensive. Unstructured interviews, despite their popularity, tend to have problems with unreliability and are susceptible to errors leading to false assumptions of the client. One of the single most successful methods for assessing personality disorders by researchers of normal personality functioning is the self-report inventory following up with a semi-structured interview. There are some disadvantages with the self-report inventory method that with histrionic personality disorder there is a distortion in character, selfpresentation, and self-image. This cannot be assessed simply by asking most clients if they match the criteria for the disorder. Most projective testing depend less on the ability or willingness of the person to provide an accurate description of the self, but there is currently limited empirical evidence on projective testing to assess histrionic personality disorder.
Another way to treat histrionic personality disorder after identification is through functional analytic psychotherapy. The job of a Functional Analytic Psychotherapist is to identify the interpersonal problems with the patient as they happen in session or out of session. Initial goals of functional analytic psychotherapy are set by the therapist and include behaviors that fit the client's needs for improvement. Functional analytic psychotherapy differs from the traditional psychotherapy due to the fact that the therapist directly addresses the patterns of behavior as they occur in-session. The in-session behaviors of the patient or client are considered to be examples of their patterns of poor interpersonal communication and to adjust their neurotic defenses. To do this, the therapist must act on the client's behavior as it happens in real time and give feedback on how the client's behavior is affecting their relationship during therapy. The therapist also helps the client with histrionic personality disorder by denoting behaviors that happen outside of treatment; these behaviors are termed "Outside Problems" and "Outside Improvements". This allows the therapist to assist in problems and improvements outside of session and to verbally support the client and condition optimal patterns of behavior". This then can reflect on how they are advancing in-session and outside of session by generalizing their behaviors over time for changes or improvement".
Another example of treatment besides coding is functional ideographic assessment template. The functional ideographic assessment template, also known as FIAT, was used as a way to generalize the clinical processes of functional analytic psychotherapy. The template was made by a combined effort of therapists and can be used to represent the behaviors that are a focus for this treatment. Using the FIAT therapists can create a common language to get stable and accurate communication results through functional analytic psychotherapy at the ease of the client; as well as the therapist.
This is called coding client and therapist behavior. In these sessions there is a certain set of dialogue or script that can be forced by the therapist for the client to give insight on their behaviors and reasoning". Here is an example from" the conversation is hypothetical. T = therapist C = Client This coded dialogue can be transcribed as: