This article provides a focused review of the literature on compulsive hoarding and presents a number of options and preliminary recommendations to be considered for DSM-V. In DSM-IV-TR, hoarding is listed as one of the diagnostic criteria for obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (OCPD). According to DSM-IV-TR, when hoarding is extreme, clinicians should consider a diagnosis of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and may diagnose both OCPD and OCD if the criteria for both are met. However, compulsive hoarding seems to frequently be independent from other neurological and psychiatric disorders, including OCD and OCPD. In this review, we first address whether hoarding should be considered a symptom of OCD and/or a criterion of OCPD. Second, we address whether compulsive hoarding should be classified as a separate disorder in DSM-V, weighing the advantages and disadvantages of doing so. Finally, we discuss where compulsive hoarding should be classified in DSM-V if included as a separate disorder. We conclude that there is sufficient evidence to recommend the creation of a new disorder, provisionally called hoarding disorder. Given the historical link between hoarding and OCD/OCPD, and the conservative approach adopted by DSM-V, it may make sense to provisionally list it as an obsessive-compulsive spectrum disorder. An alternative to our recommendation would be to include it in an Appendix of Criteria Sets Provided for Further Study. The creation of a new diagnosis in DSM-V would likely increase public awareness, improve identification of cases, and stimulate both research and the development of specific treatments for hoarding disorder.
(c) 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.