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Title: Problem gambling : predictors, impulsivity and executive function
Author: Lane, Jennifer Natalie
ISNI:       0000 0001 3604 7132
Awarding Body: University of Manchester
Current Institution: University of Manchester
Date of Award: 2008
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Background: Recent research into problem gambling (PG) has suggested many associated environmental, sociological, biological and psychological factors, specifically male gender, age, alcohol use, drug use, depression, anxiety, neuropsychological deficits and impulsivity. As yet, causal relationships remain to be established. Several theoretical models of PG have been hypothesised, with biopsychosocial approaches being favoured. Aims included; to identify specific predictors of PG in a bid to isolate potential causal factors ofPG and; to investigate the level of executive function in PGs and its relationship with impulsivity Method: The study was divided into two parts. Part one utilised a correlation design with participants (n=67) completing several questionnaires to collect demographic, psychological and personality information. Part two used.a case control design (n=14), PGs and matched controls. Participants completed neuropsychological assessment of executive fimction. Results: Multiple regression analysis indicated male gender, depression and impulsivity were significantly associated with PG. A case series presentation indicated that PGs' neurocognitive profiles of executive function differ from non-PGs. Preliminary statistical analysis demonstrated significant differences between specific neuropsychological tests. Trends towards significance were seen for planning and performance time, with PGs being identified as taking less time to plan their actions, taking longer to complete a test and making more errors. Conclusions: The specific domains of executive function, which show deficits in PGs have been suggested as the 'higher' executive functions involving planning, organising and self-monitoring behaviour. Impulsivity is hypothesised to contribute to deficits in executive function. The findings of tins study provide some insight into a fuller understanding of the factors associated with PG and tile neuropsychological functioning of a sample of PGs and have clinical implications including tile adaptation of current CBT interventions for PGs. The present investigation has been able to suggest that male gender, depression, impulsivity and executive function deficits may serve as vulnerability factors for the development and maintenance of PG. These potential vulnerability factors have been recommended as specific areas of interest for future research.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available