Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Addiction. 2016 Dec;111(12):2097-2106. doi: 10.1111/add.13297. Epub 2016 Feb 18.

Should compulsive sexual behavior be considered an addiction?

Author information

1
VISN 1 Mental Illness Research, Education and Clinical Centers, VA Connecticut Healthcare System, West Haven, CT, USA.
2
Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA.
3
University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK.
4
Department of Neurobiology, Child Study Center and CASAColumbia, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA.

Abstract

AIMS:

To review the evidence base for classifying compulsive sexual behavior (CSB) as a non-substance or 'behavioral' addiction.

METHODS:

Data from multiple domains (e.g. epidemiological, phenomenological, clinical, biological) are reviewed and considered with respect to data from substance and gambling addictions.

RESULTS:

Overlapping features exist between CSB and substance use disorders. Common neurotransmitter systems may contribute to CSB and substance use disorders, and recent neuroimaging studies highlight similarities relating to craving and attentional biases. Similar pharmacological and psychotherapeutic treatments may be applicable to CSB and substance addictions, although considerable gaps in knowledge currently exist.

CONCLUSIONS:

Despite the growing body of research linking compulsive sexual behavior (CSB) to substance addictions, significant gaps in understanding continue to complicate classification of CSB as an addiction.

KEYWORDS:

Addiction; behavioral addictions; compulsive sexual behavior; hypersexuality; neurobiology; psychiatric disorder; sexual behavior; sexual compulsivity

PMID:
26893127
PMCID:
PMC4990495
DOI:
10.1111/add.13297
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center