Factors associated with suicide and bankruptcy in Japanese pathological gamblers

Abstract

Pathological gambling can lead to a number of deleterious consequences, including bankruptcy and suicide. The present study examined the correlation between clinical characteristics of pathological gamblers and history of bankruptcy and suicide attempts. Subjects (141; 124 male) were outpatients at a psychiatric hospital from 2007 to 2010. Demographic and medical variables including age, gender, age of gambling onset, psychiatric complications, suicide attempts, and bankruptcy were assessed. Positive correlations were observed between suicide attempt and female gender, family history of addiction, and unemployment (p < 0.05). Similar variables correlated with bankruptcy (p < 0.05). Multivariate analysis revealed that a family history of addiction was the strongest independent predictor of suicide and bankruptcy. Results suggest that treatment for pathological gambling should address the patient's past experience with addict family members, especially if the patient reports a history of bankruptcy or suicidal ideation.

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