Indexed on: 19 Jul '13Published on: 19 Jul '13Published in: Aging & mental health
Hoarding disorder (HD) in late life is associated with increased risk for fire, falling, poor sanitary conditions, disability, and health risks. However, research on the health status of individuals with HD is limited. Hoarding symptoms and the resulting clutter may exacerbate health conditions and lead to improper management of medical illnesses.The purpose of this study is to characterize the health status of older adults with hoarding. The rates of medical conditions will be compared to a non-psychiatric peer group.72 older adults with HD and 25 age matched normal controls, completed a medical conditions checklist, symptom severity measures (i.e., UCLA Hoarding Severity Scale, UHSS; Saving Inventory-Revised, SI-R) and a measure capturing activities of daily living (activities of daily living-hoarding, ADL-H).Older adults with HD (n = 72) reported significantly more health conditions compared to their non-psychiatric peers (n = 25). Hoarding severity significantly predicted the total number of medical conditions. Further, the vast majority of HD patients reported at least one medical condition.This is alarming given that hoarding patients utilized health services less than typical for older adults. Given the health status of older adults with HD, interventions should target the prevention and management of medical conditions.