The subtyping of pathological gambling: A comprehensive review

Abstract

Pathological gamblers {(PGs)} present with various forms of psychopathology, maladaptive personality traits, and gambling motivations. Some suggest that this variability supports classification of {PGs} into distinct subtypes. Subtyping models are thought to have implications for understanding pathological gambling {(PG)} etiology and treatment outcomes. This review evaluates the existing literature on the subtyping of {PGs} based on psychopathology, personality, and/or motivation for gambling. We conclude that three {PG} subtypes consistently emerge from the empirical literature, and should be the focus of future study. These subtypes closely parallel the three types of gamblers presented in Blaszczynski and Nower's (2002) conceptual pathways model. We suggest that future investigations on {PG} subtypes build upon the theoretical framework of the pathways model, but also address the limitations of prior studies.

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