Personality disorders and pathological gambling: a review and re-examination of prevalence rates

R Michael Bagby, David D Vachon, Eric Bulmash, Lena C Quilty
Journal of Personality Disorders 2008, 22 (2): 191-207
The current study reviews and reexamines the association between pathological gambling and personality disorders (PDs). To date, the majority of investigations have examined the prevalence of PDs in a single group of treatment-seeking pathological gamblers (PGs); very few of these studies included a comparison group, and even fewer compared PGs to nonpathological gamblers who, in contrast to nongamblers, resemble PGs in their attraction to and engagement in gambling behavior. The current study included a sample composed of nontreatment-seeking pathological gamblers and a comparison group of nonpathological gamblers (NPGs); these participants completed a self-report instrument (SCID-II/PQ) and were administered a structured clinical interview SCID-II) designed to assess PDs. Compared to the SCID-II, the SCIDII/PQ produced significantly higher PD prevalence rate estimates and symptom endorsements. Although the pattern of specific PD prevalence and symptom endorsement varied somewhat across the instruments, PGs consistently displayed significantly higher levels of borderline PD than NPGs; this pattern endured even after controlling for Axis I disorders and overlap among Axis II PDs.

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