Untreated pathological gamblers: who recovers and who does not?

Anja Bischof*, Gallus Bischof, Christian Meyer, Ulrich John, David C. Hodgins, Hans Jürgen Rumpf

*Korrespondierende/r Autor/-in für diese Arbeit


Most individuals with a lifetime history of pathological gambling (PGs) overcome their gambling problems without formal help. Little is known about factors associated with recovery in gamblers without treatment. The aim of this study was to examine associations of psychiatric comorbidity and social conditions with remission among untreated PGs. Two recruitment channels (population-based and self-referred) were used to obtain a nation-wide sample from Germany. The sample included 118 PGs with no prior experience of help-seeking for gambling problems who received a clinical interview to assess psychiatric comorbidity, severity of disorder, social pressure, social support, and life satisfaction. Of the 118 PGs, 46.6% were recovered. Compared to current PGs, recovered PGs were older and had suffered from significantly more adverse consequences prior to recovery (OR: 1.18, CI: 1.04–1.33, p =.008). Additionally, they had experienced less social support (OR: 0.97, CI: 0.94–1.00, p =.027). No differences in terms of the number of DSM-IV criteria, financial loss, gambling intensity, and duration were found. Moreover, psychiatric disorders did not differ between groups. Untreated recovery from gambling may be independent of the severity of PG and psychiatric comorbidity. Social support might have an attenuating effect on the consequences of PG and therefore might reduce the perceived need for change.

ZeitschriftInternational Gambling Studies
Seiten (von - bis)200-213
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 03.05.2020

Strategische Forschungsbereiche und Zentren

  • Forschungsschwerpunkt: Gehirn, Hormone, Verhalten - Center for Brain, Behavior and Metabolism (CBBM)


Untersuchen Sie die Forschungsthemen von „Untreated pathological gamblers: who recovers and who does not?“. Zusammen bilden sie einen einzigartigen Fingerprint.