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J Affect Disord. 2016 Mar 15;193:208-14. doi: 10.1016/j.jad.2015.12.047. Epub 2015 Dec 29.

An investigation of the role of intolerance of uncertainty in hoarding symptoms.

Author information

1
Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology, Yeshiva University, Bronx, NY, United States; Anxiety Disorders Clinic, New York State Psychiatric Institute/Columbia University, New York, NY, United States; University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC, United States. Electronic address: michael.wheaton@einstein.yu.edu.
2
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC, United States; Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN, United States.
3
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC, United States.
4
Anxiety Disorders Clinic, New York State Psychiatric Institute/Columbia University, New York, NY, United States; Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, United States.
5
Anxiety Disorders Clinic, New York State Psychiatric Institute/Columbia University, New York, NY, United States; Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, United States; Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System, Palo Alto, CA, United States.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Hoarding disorder (HD) is a common, debilitating mental illness and public health burden. Understanding the factors that contribute to hoarding is critical for identifying treatment targets. As a relatively new diagnostic entity, this research remains in its initial stages. Intolerance of uncertainty (IU) is thought to be a vulnerability factor for generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and may also be relevant to HD. We investigated the possible association between IU and hoarding in two sets of analyses.

METHOD:

First, we administered self-report measures of IU and hoarding symptoms to unscreened undergraduate students (N=456) and used regressions to probe their association controlling for relevant covariates. Second, in a clinical sample, we compared IU across groups of patients with HD (N=26), GAD (N=26), OCD (N=51), other anxiety disorders (N=91) and healthy controls (N=29).

RESULTS:

In the student sample, IU predicted hoarding symptoms above and beyond relevant covariates, including hoarding-related beliefs. In the clinical sample, HD patients evidenced greater IU relative to healthy individuals and the mixed anxiety group, and comparable levels of IU to the GAD and OCD groups.

LIMITATIONS:

This study relied exclusively on self-report questionnaires and a cross-sectional design.

CONCLUSIONS:

IU is associated with hoarding behavior and, as we discuss, conceptual models might benefit from the study of IU as a potentially contributing factor. Directions for future research are discussed.

KEYWORDS:

Hoarding disorder; Intolerance of uncertainty; Saving cognitions

PMID:
26773912
DOI:
10.1016/j.jad.2015.12.047
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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