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What does “Sexual” mean in compulsive sexual behavior disorder? •

Commentary to the debate: “Behavioral addictions in the ICD-11”

Journal of Behavioral Addictions
Authors:
Peer Briken
and
Daniel Turner

Abstract

This paper comments three recent publications in the Journal of Behavioral Addictions (Brand et al., 2022; Gola et al., 2022; Sassover & Weinstein, 2022). It shortly discusses (1) the role of researcher biases and the significance of the naming of a disorder (here “sexual addiction” and “pornography use disorder”) for stigma and treatment, (2) the development and course of CSBD and its significance for research results, (3) the role of “Sexual” in CSBD. The paper concludes that the guidelines for CSBD give a precise description and the authors plea for an exchange between disciplines and a sex positive treatment approach.

Open access

Background and aims

Compulsive sexual behavior disorder (CSBD) will be included in ICD-11 as an impulse-control disorder. CSBD also shares clinical features with obsessive–compulsive spectrum disorders (OCSDs) and behavioral addictions. There has been relatively little systematic investigation of CSBD in obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD), the paradigmatic compulsive disorder. We aimed to determine prevalence of CSBD in OCD, and its associated sociodemographic and clinical features, including associated comorbidity, to learn more about the nature of CSBD.

Methods

Adult outpatients with current OCD (N = 539) participated in this study. The Structured Clinical Interview for OCSDs was used to diagnose OCSDs (Tourette’s syndrome, compulsive shopping, pathological gambling, kleptomania, pyromania, intermittent explosive disorder, self-injurious behavior, and CSBD). Prevalence rates of OCSDs in male versus female patients as well as comorbid disorders in OCD patients with and without CSBD were compared.

Results

Lifetime prevalence of CSBD was 5.6% in patients with current OCD and significantly higher in men than women. OCD patients with and without CSBD were similar in terms of age, age of onset of OCD, present OCD illness severity, as well as educational background. Lifetime prevalence rates of several mood, obsessive–compulsive, and impulse-control disorders were considerably elevated in patients with lifetime CSBD.

Discussion and conclusions

A substantive number of OCD patients suffered from CSBD. CSBD in OCD was more likely comorbid with other mood, obsessive–compulsive, and impulse-control disorders, but not with disorders due to substance use or addictive behaviors. This finding supports conceptualization of CSBD as a compulsive–impulsive disorder.

Open access

Abstract

Introduction

The COVID-19 pandemic had numerous consequences for general, mental and sexual health. As gender differences in sexual compulsivity (SC) have been reported in the past and SC has been connected to adverse events and psychological distress, the current study aims at investigating associations between these factors in the context of contact restrictions in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic in Germany.

Methods

We collected data for five time points in four retrospective measurement points in an online convenience sample (n T0 = 399, n T4 = 77). We investigated the influence of gender, several pandemic-related psychosocial circumstances, sensation seeking (Brief Sensation Seeking Scale), and psychological distress (Patient-Health-Questionnaire-4) on the change of SC (measured with an adapted version of the Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale) between T0 and T1 (n = 292) in a linear regression analysis. Additionally, the course of SC over the time of the pandemic was explored with a linear mixed model.

Results

Male gender was associated with higher SC compared to female gender over all measurement points. An older age, being in a relationship, having a place to retreat was associated with a change to lower SC during the first time of the pandemic. Psychological distress was associated with SC in men, but not in women. Men, who reported an increase of psychological distress were also more likely to report an increase of SC. 

Discussion

The results demonstrate that psychological distress seems to correlate with SC differently for men and women. This could be due to different excitatory and inhibitory influences on men and women during the pandemic. Furthermore, the results demonstrate the impact of pandemic related psychosocial circumstances in the times of contact restrictions.

Open access

Abstract

Background and aims

The purpose of this study was to examine the prevalence and correlates of indicators consistent with Compulsive Sexual Behavior Disorder (CSBD)—defined and operationalized according to the ICD-11 guidelines—in a large (n = 4,633; 50.5% male; 49,5% female) probability-based German national sample.

Methods

Participants were asked if they had ever experienced “intense and recurring sexual impulses or sexual urges that I had difficulty controlling and resulted in sexual behavior” over a period of several months. Those who reported this experience were queried about the associated distress.

Results

Overall, 4.9% of men [95% CI = 3.9–6.1] and 3.0% of women [95% CI = 2.3–3.9] reported experiences consistent with ICD-11 diagnostic requirements for lifetime diagnosis. In the 12 months preceding the study, 3.2% of men [95% CI = 2.4–4.2] and 1.8% of women [95% CI = 1.2–2.5] reported experiences consistent with CSBD requirements. Compared to controls and participants who reported elements of compulsive sexuality but without accompanying distress, strict religious upbringing was most prevalent in the CSBD group. The CSBD group was more likely to view sexual practices like men having sex with men as unacceptable and to report the belief that pornography has negative impacts on their sex life and life in general. Compared to the other two groups, the CSBD group was significantly more likely to have received psychiatric treatment for depression or another mental health problem during the past 12 months.

Discussion and conclusions

The current study provides novel and important insights into the prevalence and characteristics of CSBD in the general population.

Open access

Abstract

Background and aims

Compulsive sexual behavior disorder (CSBD) which includes problematic pornography use (PPU) is a clinically relevant syndrome that has been included in the ICD-11 as impulse control disorder. The number of studies on treatments in CSBD and PPU increased in the last years. The current preregistered systematic review aimed for identifying treatment studies on CSBD and PPU as well as treatment effects on symptom severity and behavior enactment.

Methods

The study was preregistered at Prospero International Prospective Register of Systematic Reviews (CRD42021252329). The literature search done in February 2022 at PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science, and PsycInfo, included original research published in peer-reviewed journals between 2000 to end 2021. The risk of bias was assessed with the CONSORT criteria. A quantitative synthesis based on effect sizes was done.

Results

Overall 24 studies were identified. Four of these studies were randomized controlled trials. Treatment approaches included settings with cognitive behavior therapy components, psychotherapy methods, and psychopharmacological therapy. Receiving treatment seems to improve symptoms of CSBD and PPU. Especially, evidence for the efficacy of cognitive behavior therapy is present.

Discussion and conclusions

There is first evidence for the effectiveness of treatment approaches such as cognitive behavior therapy. However, strong conclusions on the specificity of treatments should be drawn with caution. More rigorous and systematic methodological approaches are needed for future studies. Results may be informative for future research and the development of specific treatment programs for CSBD and PPU.

Open access
Journal of Behavioral Addictions
Authors:
Johannes Fuss
,
Jared W. Keeley
,
Dan J. Stein
,
Tahilia J. Rebello
,
José Ángel García
,
Peer Briken
,
Rebeca Robles
,
Chihiro Matsumoto
,
Christoph Abé
,
Joël Billieux
,
Jon E. Grant
,
Shane W. Kraus
,
Christine Lochner
,
Marc N. Potenza
, and
Geoffrey M. Reed

Abstract

Background and aims

The ICD-11 chapter on mental, behavioral and neurodevelopmental disorders contains new controversial diagnoses including compulsive sexual behavior disorder (CSBD), intermittent explosive disorder (IED) and gaming disorder. Using a vignette-based methodology, this field study examined the ability of mental health professionals (MHPs) to apply the new ICD-11 diagnostic requirements for impulse control disorders, which include CSBD and IED, and disorders due to addictive behaviors, which include gaming disorder, compared to the previous ICD-10 guidelines.

Methods

Across eleven comparisons, members of the WHO's Global Clinical Practice Network (N = 1,090) evaluated standardized case descriptions that were designed to test key differences between the diagnostic guidelines of ICD-11 and ICD-10.

Results

The ICD-11 outperformed the ICD-10 in the accuracy of diagnosing impulse control disorders and behavioral addictions in most comparisons, while the ICD-10 was not superior in any. The superiority of the ICD-11 was particularly clear where new diagnoses had been added to the classification system or major revisions had been made. However, the ICD-11 outperformed the ICD-10 only in a minority of comparisons in which mental health professionals were asked to evaluate cases with non-pathological high involvement in rewarding behaviors.

Discussion and Conclusions

Overall, the present study indicates that the ICD-11 diagnostic requirements represent an improvement over the ICD-10 guidelines. However, additional efforts, such as training programs for MHPs and possible refinements of diagnostic guidance, are needed to avoid over-diagnosis of people who are highly engaged in a repetitive and rewarding behavior but below the threshold for a disorder.

Open access
Journal of Behavioral Addictions
Authors:
Beáta Bőthe
,
Mónika Koós
,
Léna Nagy
,
Shane W. Kraus
,
Zsolt Demetrovics
,
Marc N. Potenza
,
Aurélie Michaud
,
Rafael Ballester-Arnal
,
Dominik Batthyány
,
Sophie Bergeron
,
Joël Billieux
,
Peer Briken
,
Julius Burkauskas
,
Georgina Cárdenas-López
,
Joana Carvalho
,
Jesús Castro-Calvo
,
Lijun Chen
,
Giacomo Ciocca
,
Ornella Corazza
,
Rita Csako
,
David P. Fernandez
,
Elaine F. Fernandez
,
Loïs Fournier
,
Hironobu Fujiwara
,
Johannes Fuss
,
Roman Gabrhelík
,
Ateret Gewirtz-Meydan
,
Biljana Gjoneska
,
Mateusz Gola
,
Joshua B. Grubbs
,
Hashim T. Hashim
,
Md. Saiful Islam
,
Mustafa Ismail
,
Martha C. Jiménez-Martínez
,
Tanja Jurin
,
Ondrej Kalina
,
Verena Klein
,
András Költő
,
Chih-Ting Lee
,
Sang-Kyu Lee
,
Karol Lewczuk
,
Chung-Ying Lin
,
Liverpool John Moores University's research team † Liverpool John Moores University's research team
,
Christine Lochner
,
Silvia López-Alvarado
,
Kateřina Lukavská
,
Percy Mayta-Tristán
,
Ionut Milea
,
Dan J. Miller
,
Oľga Orosová
,
Gábor Orosz
,
Sungkyunkwan University's research team †† Sungkyunkwan University's research team
,
Fernando P. Ponce
,
Gonzalo R. Quintana
,
Gabriel C. Quintero Garzola
,
Jano Ramos-Diaz
,
Kévin Rigaud
,
Ann Rousseau
,
Marco De Tubino Scanavino
,
Marion K. Schulmeyer
,
Pratap Sharan
,
Mami Shibata
,
Sheikh Shoib
,
Vera L. Sigre Leirós
,
Luke Sniewski
,
Ognen Spasovski
,
Vesta Steibliene
,
Dan J. Stein
,
Julian Strizek
,
Aleksandar Štulhofer
,
Berk C. Ünsal
, and
Marie-Pier Vaillancourt-Morel

Abstract

Background and aims

Despite its inclusion in the 11th revision of the International Classification of Diseases, there is a virtual paucity of high-quality scientific evidence about compulsive sexual behavior disorder (CSBD), especially in underrepresented and underserved populations. Therefore, we comprehensively examined CSBD across 42 countries, genders, and sexual orientations, and validated the original (CSBD-19) and short (CSBD-7) versions of the Compulsive Sexual Behavior Disorder Scale to provide standardized, state-of-the-art screening tools for research and clinical practice.

Method

Using data from the International Sex Survey (N = 82,243; M age = 32.39 years, SD = 12.52), we evaluated the psychometric properties of the CSBD-19 and CSBD-7 and compared CSBD across 42 countries, three genders, eight sexual orientations, and individuals with low vs. high risk of experiencing CSBD.

Results

A total of 4.8% of the participants were at high risk of experiencing CSBD. Country- and gender-based differences were observed, while no sexual-orientation-based differences were present in CSBD levels. Only 14% of individuals with CSBD have ever sought treatment for this disorder, with an additional 33% not having sought treatment because of various reasons. Both versions of the scale demonstrated excellent validity and reliability.

Discussion and conclusions

This study contributes to a better understanding of CSBD in underrepresented and underserved populations and facilitates its identification in diverse populations by providing freely accessible ICD-11-based screening tools in 26 languages. The findings may also serve as a crucial building block to stimulate research into evidence-based, culturally sensitive prevention and intervention strategies for CSBD that are currently missing from the literature.

Open access