News and Research

Mothers Critical of Their Kids With OCD

Research shows that mothers tend to be more critical of children with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) than they are of other children in the family, and this parental behavior is linked to poorer outcomes for the child after treatment. (Child Psychiatry & Human Development, 2012, (43)3: 337-353) Read more. 

Diagnosing OCD in Children Before It’s Too Late

Researchers point out how appropriate early recognition and treatment of OCD in children can positively affect the course of the disorder. (Deutsches Ärzteblatt International, 108(11): 173–9) Read more.

Urine Test for OCD

Researchers have identified gene mutations that impair kidney function leading to a rare kidney disorder. The same gene, also crucial for normal brain function, has been connected with OCD, and findings could lead to earlier diagnosis of children who may be at risk through routine urine test for newborns. (Journal of Clinical Investigation,  2011;121(1):446–453) Read more.

Radiation to Relieve Severe OCD

The results of a small clinical trial suggest that targeting the brain's anterior capsule with precise, high-intensity radiation led to dramatic improvements in people with severe obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). (Neurosurgery, 2011; 68: 28–33) Read more. 

Do Training Levels Affect Efficacy of ERP for OCD?

A study compared the effectiveness of exposure and response prevention (ERP) therapy for OCD patients delivered by clinicians with a variety of training levels. ERP is effective as long as it is informed by an appropriate threshold of training and a standardized treatment manual. (Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 2010 Sep;71(9):1158–67) Read more.

Deep Brain Stimulation for Treatment-Resistant OCD

Anxiety and depressive symptoms decreased by half, according to the authors of a recent study assessing the safety and effectiveness of deep brain stimulation in a group of 16 patients whose OCD had not responded to previous rounds of treatment. (Archives of General Psychiatry, 2010;67(10): 1061–1068) Read more. 

New Treatment Options Target Causes of Childhood OCD and Tourette’s

A special free online issue focuses on the neurobiological bases of pediatric OCD and Tourette’s syndrome, which share similarities in genetic and environmental factors, treatments, and psychiatric features. (Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology, Aug. 2010; 20(4) Read more.

Badly Behaved Animals May Offer Insight Into OCD

A scientist at Tufts University reports that variations in the gene for a protein involved in the central nervous system development may underlie compulsive disorders in dogs. Arguing that animal compulsions bear relevance to human obsessive-compulsive disorders and that the Alzheimer's drug memantine may help people with OCD, a new OCD treatment may be on the horizon. (Molecular Psychiatry, 2010; 15:8–10) Read more.

Follow-Up on SRI-Resistant OCD

A long-term follow-up analysis discusses predictors of remission for patients with SRI-resistant OCD. (Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology, June 2010, 30(3):267-272) Read more.

Single Gene Found Responsible for OCD-Like Behaviors

Researchers discovered that mice missing a single gene, called Slitrk5, developed repetitive obsessive-compulsive-like behaviors. The genetically altered mice behaved much like people with a certain type of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). (Nature Medicine, 25 April 2010; 16: 598-602) Read more.

OCD, Trauma, and Methadone

Research at Tel Aviv University showed a clear association of OCD and lifetime history of any traumatic events among patients in methadone maintenance treatment. (CNS Spectrums, 2009; 14(10):547-554)
Read more.

Deep-Brain Stimulator for Severe OCD Approved by FDA

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently approved a humanitarian device exemption for the first implantable device that delivers intermittent electrical therapy deep inside the brain to suppress symptoms associated with severe OCD. 
Read more.

OCD Linked to Risk of Eating Disorders

New research suggests that physicians and other health workers should be more aware of the high risk of eating disorders among people who have OCD. As many as one in five people with OCD could have some form of disordered eating, as could one in three patients with other anxiety disorders.
Read more.

Parents’ Accommodations Can Worsen Children’s OCD

Parents of children with OCD who try to make the symptoms less impairing often reinforce the disorder. Researchers also found that the more severe a child’s OCD, the more a family seemed to accommodate OCD behaviors. During CBT sessions with the patients in this study, the parents also learned how to deal with their child’s OCD. (Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, April 2009; 77(2:355-360)
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Chemical Identified as a Key Factor in Children With OCD

Researchers at the University of Michigan, Children's Hospital of Michigan and University of Toronto/ Hospital for Sick Kids discovered that the chemical, glutamate, plays a key role in children with OCD. This study showed that children with OCD had abnormal glutamate levels in key brain regions that were reversible with effective treatment.
Read more.

OCD Commonly Co-Occurs in Teens With Anorexia

Among the results of a study comparing teenagers with anorexia nervosa to a control group of healthy teens, findings show that 39 percent have at least one other psychiatric disorder in addition to their eating disorder—the most common being obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). (The British Journal of Psychiatry. 2009; 194:168-174)
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