Cognitive Therapy and Research

, Volume 41, Issue 5, pp 799–805 | Cite as

A Preliminary Investigation of the Measurement of Object Interconnectedness in Hoarding Disorder

  • Mary E. Dozier
  • Charles T. Taylor
  • Natalie Castriotta
  • Tina L. Mayes
  • Catherine R. Ayers
Original Article


A defining feature of hoarding disorder (HD) is excessive attachment to possessions. Several existing self-report measures assess emotional attachment to items but do not explicitly assess the level of interconnectedness between the individual and their items. The current study investigated a new self-report measure of object attachment based on a measure of interconnectedness among individuals. The visual nature of this measure may be especially useful in HD patients since hoarding is often characterized by low insight. Participants completed the Relationship between Self and Items (RSI) measure and measures of hoarding severity, clutter, anxiety, and depression. HD participants reported significantly higher scores on the RSI than did community controls. The RSI was positively associated with hoarding symptoms, but was not significantly correlated with symptoms of anxiety or depression. Results also suggested that the RSI is sensitive to change from pre to post-treatment. This brief, one-item measure may be useful as a screen for HD and to provide further clinical data on level of interconnectedness to possessions.


Hoarding disorder Interconnectedness Anxiety 



This study was funded by the Clinical Science R and D Program of the Veterans Health Administration (CSRD-068-10S and CLNA-005-14S). The contents do not reflect the views of the Department of Veterans Affairs or the United States Government.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Mary E. Dozier, Charles T. Taylor, Natalie Castriotta, Tina L. Mayes, and Catherine R. Ayers declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Informed Consent

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Animal Rights

This article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York (outside the USA)  2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Research ServiceVA San Diego Healthcare SystemSan DiegoUSA
  2. 2.San Diego State University/University of California, San Diego Joint Doctoral Program in Clinical PsychologySan DiegoUSA
  3. 3.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of California, San Diego School of MedicineSan DiegoUSA
  4. 4.Psychology ServiceVA San Diego Healthcare SystemSan DiegoUSA

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