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Hoarding Behaviour in an Italian Non-Clinical Sample

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  04 January 2013

Francesco Bulli*
Institute of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychology and Psychotherapy, Florence, Italy
Gabriele Melli
Institute of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychology and Psychotherapy, Florence, Italy
Claudia Carraresi
Institute of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychology and Psychotherapy, Florence, Italy
Eleonora Stopani
Institute of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychology and Psychotherapy, Florence, Italy
Alberto Pertusa
King's College London, Institute of Psychiatry, UK
Randy O. Frost
Smith College, Northampton, USA
Reprint requests to Francesco Bulli, Via Mannelli, 139 - 50132 Florence, Italy. E-mail:


Background: Hoarding is associated with significant impairment. Although traditionally considered as a symptom of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), some authors have proposed that pathological hoarding could be considered as a stand alone condition. The prevalence of pathological hoarding behaviour has been shown to be high in some countries, but little is known about the prevalence and correlates of hoarding in the non-clinical population in Italy. Method: We studied the prevalence of self-reported hoarding behaviour using the Italian version of the Saving Inventory-Revised, as well as the association between hoarding and various clinical correlates, including obsessive-compulsive symptoms, compulsive buying, anxiety, and depression. Results: The prevalence of pathological hoarding behaviour in two studies was between 3.7 and 6.0%. No differences were found between hoarding and non-hoarding participants with regard to gender, age, marital status, level of education, and employment status. Significant correlations were found between compulsive hoarding and obsessive-compulsive symptoms and also between hoarding and a measure of compulsive buying, even after controlling for anxiety and depressive symptoms. Conclusions: These results indicate that pathological hoarding may also be prevalent in Italy and highlight the need for further epidemiological studies using validated instruments to assess hoarding disorder.

Research Article
Copyright © British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies 2013 

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