Hoarding behavior among young children with obsessive-compulsive disorder

Hannah Frank, Elyse Stewart, Michael Walther, Kristen Benito, Jennifer Freeman, Christine Conelea, Abbe Garcia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Previous research has shown that among the various subtypes of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), adults (e.g. Frost, Krause, & Steketee, 1996) and older children and adolescents (Bloch et al., 2009; Storch et al., 2007) with problematic hoarding have distinct features and a poor treatment prognosis. However, there is limited information on the phenomenology and prevalence of hoarding behaviors in young children. The present study characterizes children ages 10 and under who present with OCD and hoarding behaviors.Sixty-eight children received a structured interview-determined diagnosis of OCD. Clinician administered, parent-report, and child-report measures on demographic, symptomatic, and diagnostic variables were completed. Clinician ratings of hoarding symptoms and parent and child endorsement of the hoarding item on the Children's Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale (CY-BOCS) checklist (Scahill, Riddle, McSwaggin-Hardin, & Ort, 1997) determined inclusion in the hoarding group (n=33).Compared to children without hoarding symptoms (n=35), the presence of hoarding symptoms was associated with an earlier age of primary diagnosis onset and a higher proportion of ADHD and provisional anxiety diagnoses. These results are partially consistent with the adult literature and with findings in older children (Storch et al. (2007). Compr Psychiatry, 48(4), 313-318.) Additional data on clinical presentation and phenomenology of hoarding are needed to form a developmentally appropriate definition of the behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6-11
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Obsessive-Compulsive and Related Disorders
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2014


  • Children
  • Hoarding
  • OCD

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