Controversies and Clinical Recommendations for the Treatment of Compulsive Sexual Behavior Disorder

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Current Addiction Reports

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Purpose of Review: Compulsive sexual behavior disorder is defined as a persistent pattern of failure to control intense, repetitive sexual impulses or urges resulting in repetitive sexual behaviors that cause marked distress or impairment in personal, family, social, educational, occupational, or other important areas of functioning. Although compulsive sexual behavior has been identified in the literature for a considerable period of time, it remains a controversial and understudied condition. For the past several decades, compulsive sexual behavior has been labeled and classified in numerous ways. Recent Findings: Research on minoritized racial, ethnic, and sexual groups, older adults, individuals with disabilities, and the impact of religious beliefs remains limited in the literature of compulsive sexual behavior. Several psychiatric comorbidities with compulsive sexual behavior have been identified; however, treatment options, neuroscience, proper medication, and assessment measures are insufficient to draw strong conclusions. Summary: Recommendations for future classification, research, treatment, and assessment are suggested to aid in filling these gaps. Specifically, additional focus should be given to diverse populations (e.g., LGBTQ + , older adults, Black, Indigenous, and People of Color, individuals with intellectual and physical disabilities) in future research to better understand the etiology, prevalence, assessment, and best clinical practices for treatment-seeking clients.


Compulsive sexual behavior disorder; Problematic pornography use; Review; Sexual addiction; Hypersexual disorder


Mental and Social Health | Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy



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