A DSM-IV Axis I Comorbidity Study of Males (n = 120) with Paraphilias and Paraphilia-Related Disorders

  • Martin P. Kafka
  • John Hennen
Article

Abstract

One hundred and twenty consecutively evaluated outpatient males with paraphilias (PAs; n = 88, including 60 sex offenders) and paraphilia-related disorders (PRDs; n = 32) were systematically assessed for certain developmental variables and DSM-IV-defined Axis I comorbidity. In comparison with the PRDs, the PA group was statistically significantly more likely to self-report a higher incidence of (but not sexual) abuse, fewer years of completed education, a higher prevalence of school-associated learning and behavioral problems, more psychiatric/substance abuse hospitalizations, and increased employment-related disability as well as more lifetime contact with the criminal justice system. In both groups, the most prevalent Axis I disorders were mood disorders (71.6%), especially early onset dysthymic disorder (55%) and major depression (39%). Anxiety disorders (38.3%), especially social phobia (21.6%), and psychoactive substance abuse (40.8%), especially alcohol abuse (30%), were reported as well. Cocaine abuse was statistically significantly associated with PA males (p = .03). There was a statistically significant correlation between the lifetime prevalence of Axis I nonsexual diagnoses and hypersexual diagnoses (PAs and PRDs). The prevalence of retrospectively diagnosed attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) was 35.8%, the third most prevalent Axis I disorder. ADHD (p = .01), especially ADHD-combined subtype (p = .009), was statistically significantly associated with PA status. ADHD was statistically significantly associated with conduct disorder, and both of these Axis I disorders were associated with the propensity for multiple PAs and a higher likelihood of incarceration. When the diagnosis of ADHD was controlled, the differences reported above between PAs and PRDs either became statistically nonsignificant or remained as only statistical trends. Thus, ADHD and its associated developmental sequellae and Axis I comorbidities was the single most common nonsexual Axis I diagnosis that statistically significantly distinguished males with socially deviant sexual arousal (PAs) from a nonparaphilic hypersexual comparison group (PRDs). Sex offender paraphiliacs were more likely to be diagnosed with conduct disorder, alcohol abuse, cocaine abuse, and generalized anxiety disorder. The prevalence of any ADHD in the sex offender paraphiliacs was 43.3%, and nearly 25% of offenders were diagnosed with ADHD-combined subtype.

attention deficit hyperactivity disorder depression paraphilias paraphilia-related disorder sex offender sexual addiction 

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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Martin P. Kafka
    • 1
  • John Hennen
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryMcLean HospitalBelmont
  2. 2.Biostatistics LaboratoryMcLean HospitalBelmont

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