Gender differences in the associations between past-year gambling problems and psychiatric disorders

  • Rani A. Desai
  • Marc N. Potenza



Psychiatric disorders frequently co-occur with pathological gambling. The extent to which co-occurence extends to subsyndromal levels of gambling or differs between women and men is incompletely understood.


To examine whether the association between psychiatric disorders and past-year gambling problems is stronger in women than men.


Data from the national epidemiological survey of alcoholism and related disorders (NESARC) (n = 43,093) were analyzed.


Increasing severity of past-year gambling problems was associated with increasing odds of most past-year Axis I and lifetime Axis II disorders, regardless of gender. Associations between gambling problems and major depression, dysthymia, panic disorder, and nicotine dependence were statistically stronger in women than in men.


A severity-related association exists between past-year gambling problems and psychiatric disorders. The stronger associations in women suggest that gambling research, prevention and treatment efforts consider gender differences.

Key words

gambling disorders comorbidity gender psychiatric disorders 



This work was supported by the Veteran’s Administration Hospital Mental Illness Research Education and Clinical Center (MIRECC VISN 1), and Women’s Health Research at Yale.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Dept. of Psychiatry and Women and Addictive DisordersCore of Women’s Health Research, Yale University School of MedicineNew HavenUSA
  2. 2.NEPEC/182, VA CT Healthcare SystemWest HavenUSA

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