Psychopathology in pathological gamblers seeking treatment

Sheila M Specker, Gregory A. Carlson, Karen M. Edmonson, Paula E. Johnson, Michael Marcotte

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

146 Scopus citations


High rates of psychiatric symptoms have been reported in pathological gamblers. This study of psychiatric comorbidity in pathological gamblers is the first to use structured psychiatric interviews assessing DSM-III-R Axis I and II disorders. The Structured Clinical Interview for DSM III-R (SCID-P, SCID-II) was administered to 40 (25 male, 15 male) pathological gamblers seeking outpatient treatment in Minnesota for gambling, and 64 (41 male, 23 female) controls. High lifetime rates of Axis I (92%) but not Axis II (25%) psychopathology were found in pathological gamblers as compared to controls. No differences between male and female gamblers were found in rates of affective, substance use or personality disorders. Females had higher rates of anxiety disorders and histories of physical/sexual abuse. Possible associations between psychiatric disorders and pathological gambling are discussed along with gambler typologies and implications for future research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)67-81
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of gambling studies
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1996


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