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CNS Spectr. 2009 Feb;14(2):83-91.

Differences in characteristics of Asian American and white problem gamblers calling a gambling helpline.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Women and Addictive Disorders Core of Women's Health Research, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06519, USA.



The characteristics of Asian American and white problem gamblers using a gambling helpline were examined to identify race-related differences.


Logistic regression analyses were conducted on data obtained from callers to a gambling helpline serving southern New England in 2000-2003, inclusive.


Of the 144 phone calls used in the analyses, 72 were from Asian American callers and 72 were from white callers who were matched on gender, education, income, marital/cohabitation status, and age. Race-related differences were observed in forms of gambling problems, psychiatric problems secondary to gambling, substance use problems, and family history. Asian American gamblers were more likely to report suicide attempts related to gambling and problems with non-strategic gambling. White gamblers were more likely to report both casino and non-casino gambling problems and personal and familial alcohol use problems. High proportions of both groups reported problems with strategic gambling, gambling-related anxiety, family and financial problems secondary to gambling, financial debt, daily tobacco use, and a family history of problem gambling.


Race-related differences should be considered in optimizing prevention and treatment strategies related to problem gambling.

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