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      Response trajectories of gambling severity after cognitive behavioral therapy in young-adult pathological gamblers

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          Background and aims

          The significant increase in the prevalence of gambling disorder (GD) among young adults in recent years has attracted interest in determining therapeutic efficiency in this sector of the population. The aim of this work was to estimate the response trajectories of gambling severity during the six-month follow-up after a cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) program in young adult patients and to identify the main variables associated with each trajectory.


          The sample included n = 192 patients, aged 19–35 years old, seeking treatment for GD. Response trajectories were identified through latent class growth analysis.


          Three trajectories emerged: T1 ( n = 118, 61.5%), composed of patients with severe GD at pre-treatment and good evolution to recovery; T2 ( n = 62, 32.3%), with patients with moderate-high GD affectation at baseline and good evolution to recovery; and T3 ( n = 12, 6.3%), with participants with severe baseline GD severity and poor evolution after CBT (Abbott, 2019). The highest risk of poor therapeutic outcomes was related to lower social index positions, high emotional distress, high scores in harm avoidance and low scores in self-directedness.

          Discussion and conclusions

          Differences in the response trajectories at short-term follow-up after CBT reveal heterogeneity in the samples including young and young-adult GD patients. Patients' phenotype at baseline should be considered when developing efficient, person-centered intervention programs, which should comprise strategies aimed at increasing emotional regulation capacities, self-esteem and self-efficacy, with the aim of avoiding relapses in the medium-long term after therapy.

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          Author and article information

          Journal of Behavioral Addictions
          J Behav Addict
          Akadémiai Kiadó (Budapest )
          07 April 2020
          : 1-13
          [1 ] deptCIBER Fisiopatologia Obesidad y Nutrición (CIBERobn) , Instituto de Salud Carlos III , Barcelona, Spain
          [2 ] deptDepartament de Psicobiologia i Metodologia , univAutonomous University of Barcelona , Barcelona, Spain
          [3 ] deptDepartment of Psychiatry , Bellvitge University Hospital-IDIBELL , Barcelona, Spain
          [4 ] deptDepartment of Clinical Sciences , School of Medicine , univUniversity of Barcelona , Barcelona, Spain
          [5 ] deptDepartment of Public Health, Mental Health and Mother-Infant Nursing , University School of Nursing , univUniversity of Barcelona , Barcelona, Spain
          [6 ] deptDepartamento de Educación y Psicología , Centro Universitario Cardenal Cisneros , univUniversidad de Alcalá , Madrid, Spain
          [7 ] deptCIBER Salud Mental (CIBERsam) , Instituto de Salud Carlos III , Barcelona, Spain
          Author notes
          [* ]Corresponding author. deptDepartment of Psychiatry , univBellvitge University Hospital-IDIBELL and CIBERObn , c/Feixa Llarga s/n, 08907, Hospitalet de Llobregat , Barcelona, Spain. Tel.: +34 93 260 79 88; fax: +34 93 260 76 58. E-mail: sjimenez@
          © 2020 The Author(s)

          This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution‐NonCommercial 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium for non-commercial purposes, provided the original author and source are credited, a link to the CC License is provided, and changes – if any – are indicated.

          Page count
          Figures: 02, Tables: 02, Equations: 00, References: 67, Pages: 13
          Self URI (journal page):
          Funded by: Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad
          Award ID: PSI2015-68701-R
          Funded by: Delegación del Gobierno para el Plan Nacional sobre Drogas
          Award ID: 2017I067 and 2019I47
          Funded by: Instituto de Salud Carlos III (ISCIII)
          Award ID: FIS PI14/00290
          Award ID: PI17/01167
          Funded by: Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte
          Award ID: FPU16/02087
          Award ID: FPU15/02911
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