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      How do online sports gambling disorder patients compare with land-based patients?

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          Background and aims

          Recent technological developments have brought about notable changes in the way people gamble. The widespread use of mobile Internet devices and gambling websites has led to a significant leap in the number of people who recreationally gamble. However, for some, gambling can turn into a psychiatric disorder resembling substance addiction. At present, there is a shortage of studies examining differences between adults with gambling disorder (GD) who exclusively make sports bets online, GD patients that are non-sports Internet gamblers, and offline gamblers. Therefore, this study was undertaken to determine the differences between these three groups, considering sociodemographic, personality, and clinical characteristics.


          The sample consisted of 2,743 treatment-seeking male patients from the Pathological Gambling Unit at a university hospital. All patients met DSM-5 criteria for GD.


          We found that gamblers who exclusively engaged in non-sports Internet gambling activities were younger than offline gamblers and online sports gamblers. Non-sports Internet gamblers were also more likely to have greater levels of debt compared with offline gamblers. In terms of personality characteristics, our sample displayed low levels of self-directedness and cooperativeness and high levels of novelty seeking. In addition, online sports gamblers obtained higher scores in persistence than non-sports Internet gamblers and offline gamblers.

          Discussion and conclusion

          Although differences if terms of gambling severity were not identified between groups, GD patients who exclusively bet online appear to possess distinct personality characteristics and higher debt levels compared with offline gamblers.

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          Most cited references 44

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          A pathways model of problem and pathological gambling.

          At the moment, there is no single conceptual theoretical model of gambling that adequately accounts for the multiple biological, psychological and ecological variables contributing to the development of pathological gambling. Advances in this area are hampered by imprecise definitions of pathological gambling, failure to distinguish between gambling problems and problem gamblers and a tendency to assume that pathological gamblers form one, homogeneous population with similar psychological principles applying equally to all members of the class. The purpose of this paper is to advance a pathways model that integrates the complex array of biological, personality, developmental, cognitive, learning theory and ecological determinants of problem and pathological gambling. It is proposed that three distinct subgroups of gamblers manifesting impaired control over their behaviour can be identified. These groups include (a) behaviourally conditioned problem gamblers, (b) emotionally vulnerable problem gamblers and (c) antisocial, impulsivist problem gamblers. The implications for clinical management are discussed.
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            [Temperament and Character Inventory Revised (TCI-R). Standardization and normative data in a general population sample].

            The revised version of the Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI-R), a tool designed by C. R. Cloninger for the evaluation of the seven dimensions defined in his psychobiological model of personality, was translated and adapted to Spanish. The aim of the study was to obtain normative data and scales with T-scores in a incidental sample of the general Spanish population. After adaptation to Spanish, the tool was administered to 400 subjects from several areas of Spain. The sample is stratified according to age and gender according to the year 2001 Spanish population census. We have studied the differences between men and women and the association between age and dimensions. We have checked the normal distribution of the traits, and proceeded with the standardization and normalization of the scores. We present the mean and standard deviation according to sex for each of the main dimensions and subscales. The scores of the main dimensions obtained for general population according to gender show a normal distribution that has allowed us to standardize them into T-scores. The reliability of the dimensions is high. There are differences in the means depending on gender: women scored higher in Harm Avoidance, Reward Dependence and Cooperativeness. Men scored higher in Persistence. There were no high correlations between age and the dimensions. The Spanish version of the new TCI-R is an adequate tool for the study of personality dimensions of normal population.
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              Online Gambling Addiction: the Relationship Between Internet Gambling and Disordered Gambling

              One of the most significant changes to the gambling environment in the past 15 years has been the increased availability of Internet gambling, including mobile; Internet gambling is the fastest growing mode of gambling and is changing the way that gamblers engage with this activity. Due to the high level of accessibility, immersive interface and ease at which money can be spent, concerns have been expressed that Internet gambling may increase rates of disordered gambling. The current paper aimed to provide an overview of the research to date as well as highlight new and interesting findings relevant to Internet gambling addiction. A comprehensive review of the existing literature was conducted to provide an overview of significant trends and developments in research that relates to disordered Internet gambling. This paper presents research to inform a greater understanding of adult participation in Internet gambling, features of this interface that may impact problem severity, the relationship between Internet gambling and related problems, as well as considering the role of the wider spectrum of gambling behaviour and relevant individual factors that moderate this relationship.

                Author and article information

                Journal of Behavioral Addictions
                J Behav Addict
                Akadémiai Kiadó (Budapest )
                23 October 2017
                December 2017
                : 6
                : 4
                : 639-647
                [ 1 ] Department of Personality, Psychological Assessment and Treatment of the University of Deusto , Bilbao, Spain
                [ 2 ] Ciber Fisiopatología Obesidad y Nutrición (CIBERObn), Instituto de Salud Carlos III , Madrid, Spain
                [ 3 ] Departament de Psicobiologia i Metodologia de les Ciències de la Salut, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona , Barcelona, Spain
                [ 4 ] Pathological Gambling Unit, Department of Psychiatry, Bellvitge University Hospital – IDIBELL , Barcelona, Spain
                [ 5 ] Department of Clinical Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Barcelona , Barcelona, Spain
                [ 6 ] Nursing Department of Mental Health, Public Health, Maternal and Child Health, Nursing School, University of Barcelona , Barcelona, Spain
                [ 7 ] International Gaming Research Unit, Nottingham Trent University , Nottingham, UK
                [ 8 ] Departament de Psicologia Clínica, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona , Barcelona, Spain
                [ 9 ] Ciber de Salud Mental (CIBERSAM), Instituto de Salud Carlos III , Madrid, Spain
                Author notes
                [* ]Corresponding author: Susana Jiménez-Murcia; Head of Pathological Gambling Unit, Department of Psychiatry, Bellvitge University Hospital, c/Feixa Llarga, s/n, 08907 L’Hospitalet de Llobregat, Barcelona, Spain; Phone: +34 93 260 79 88; Fax: +34 93 260 76 58; E-mail: sjimenez@
                © 2017 The Author(s)

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium for non-commercial purposes, provided the original author and source are credited.

                Page count
                Figures: 0, Tables: 2, Equations: 0, References: 51, Pages: 9
                Funding sources: This manuscript and research were supported by grants from Instituto de Salud Carlos III (PI14/00290, CIBERObn, CIBERsam, and Fondos FEDER) and Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad (PSI2015-68701-R). Both CIBERObn and CIBERSAM are an initiative of ISCIII. GM-B is supported by a predoctoral grant of AGAUR (2016FI_B 00568). HL-G is funded by a postdoctoral fellowship from the Basque government (POS_2015_1_0062).
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