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Psychiatry Res. 2012 Dec 30;200(2-3):581-7. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2012.06.003. Epub 2012 Jul 4.

Neuropsychological performance, impulsivity, ADHD symptoms, and novelty seeking in compulsive buying disorder.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, University of Iowa Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine, Iowa City, IA 52242, USA.


We examined the neuropsychological performance of people with compulsive buying disorder (CBD) and control subjects, along with trait impulsivity, symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and selected personality characteristics. Subjects received a comprehensive neuropsychological test battery, depression and ADHD symptom assessment, the Barratt Impulsiveness Scale, and a version of the Temperament and Character Inventory. Persons with CBD (n=26) and controls (n=32) were comparable in terms of age, sex, and years of education. Subjects with CBD had a mean age of 36.3 years (S.D.=15.7) and an age at onset of 19.7 years (S.D.=7.0). Compulsive buyers had more lifetime mood, anxiety, and impulse control disorders. People with Compulsive buying performed significantly better on the Wechsler Abbreviated Scale of Intelligence Picture Completion task, a test of visual perception; otherwise, there were no consistent differences in neuropsychological measures. They also had elevated levels of self-reported depression, ADHD symptoms, trait impulsivity, and novelty seeking. In conclusion, compulsive buyers have greater lifetime psychiatric comorbidity than controls, and higher levels of self-rated depression, ADHD symptoms, trait impulsivity, and novelty seeking. The present study does not support the notion that there is a pattern of neuropsychological deficits associated with CBD.

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

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