A meta-analysis of pathological gaming prevalence and comorbidity with mental health, academic and social problems

Ferguson, Christopher J., Coulson, Mark and Barnett, Jane (2011) A meta-analysis of pathological gaming prevalence and comorbidity with mental health, academic and social problems. Journal of Psychiatric Research, 45 (12). pp. 1573-1578. ISSN 0022-3956 (doi:10.1016/j.jpsychires.2011.09.005)

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Abstract

Background: Mental health professionals, policy makers and the general public continue to debate the
issue of pathological video gaming. Scholars disagree on the prevalence and diagnostic criteria for this
potential new disorder. The current meta-analysis considers existing scholarship to examine how
differing measurement methods in fl uence prevalence rates and associations with other mental health
problems.
Method: Thirty three published studies and doctoral dissertations were analyzed in meta-analysis.
Prevalence rates and comorbidity with other mental health problems were examined according to
measurement method.
Results: Prevalence estimates and comorbidity with other problems varied widely between studies.
Measurement which attempted to replicate “pathological gambling” approaches produced higher
prevalence estimates and lower comorbidity estimates than methods which focused on the interfering
nature of pathological gaming. The most precise measures produce an overall prevalence rate of 3.1%.
Interpretation: Diagnostic analogies with pathological gambling may produce spuriously high prevalence
estimates, potentially over identifying non-pathological players as pathological. Diagnostic approaches
focused on the interfering nature on other life needs and responsibilities may have greater validity and
utility.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Science and Technology > Psychology
A. > School of Science and Technology > Psychology > Applied Health Psychology group
A. > School of Science and Technology > Psychology > Forensic Psychology Research Group
Item ID: 9700
Useful Links:
Depositing User: Mark Coulson
Date Deposited: 11 Jan 2013 07:25
Last Modified: 13 Oct 2016 14:25
URI: https://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/9700

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