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Available from: Samuel Robin Chamberlain, Jun 19, 2014
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    ABSTRACT: Individuals who are not clinically diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) but still display obsessive-compulsive (OC) tendencies may show cognitive impairments. The present study investigated whether there are subgroups within a healthy group showing characteristic cognitive and emotional performance levels similar to those found in OCD patients and whether they differ from OCD subgroups regarding performance levels. Of interest are those cases showing subclinical symptomatology. The results revealed no impairments in the subclinical OC participants on the neuropsychological tasks, while evidence suggests that there exist high and low scores on two standardised clinical instruments (Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale and Cognitive Assessment Instrument of Obsessions and Compulsions) in a healthy sample. OC symptoms may diminish the quality of life and prolong sustainable return to work. It may be that occupational rehabilitation programmes are more effective in rectifying subclinical OC tendencies compared to the often complex symptoms of diagnosed OCD patients. The relationship between cognitive style and subclinical OC symptoms is discussed in terms of how materials and information might be processed. Although subclinical OC tendencies would not seem to constitute a diagnosis of OCD, the quality of treatment programmes such as cognitive behavioural therapy can be improved based on the current investigation.
    07/2013; 2013:565191. DOI:10.1155/2013/565191
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    ABSTRACT: Objective: To investigate spatial recognition abilities and working memory in obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD) patients grouped according to their primary symptom dimensions. Memory has always occupied a central position in OCD research, mainly because of the notion that faulty memory processes could mediate many of the repetitive compul-sive rituals. However, the role of different memory systems is not yet fully understood. Methods: There were 68 OCD patients and 65 healthy controls who completed two tasks from the Cambridge Neu-ropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB); a) spatial recognition memory, b) spatial working memory. Standard clinical and psychological background measures were also employed. Results: The OCD patients were impaired in spatial recognition memory whereas spatial working memory was spared regarding performance accuracy. Selective deficits in visuospatial recognition memory were associated with patients in all symptom dimensions while patients in the dimension contamination were the only ones impaired in both recognition ac-curacy and recognition time. Conclusion: It is suggested that spatial memory impairments may be secondary to an inability to apply efficiently elabo-rated attentional and goal-oriented strategies as part of the executive system to support visuospatial recognition memory in addition to experiences of incompleteness. The clinical relevance of the findings is discussed (German J Psychiatry 2011; 14: 1-12).
    German Journal of Psychiatry 07/2011; 14:1-12.
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    ABSTRACT: Objective: To investigate the ability of patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) in identifying pleasant and disgusting smells. Methods: Participants were 55 OCD patients and 80 healthy controls, also matched for history of cigarette smoking. They were administered a smell identification test consisting of a subsample of 13 smells from the Pennsylvania Smell Identification Test (UPSIT) in addition to two new smells. Participants were exposed to smells from liquids in glass bottles. Results: The OCD patients were significantly impaired compared to the healthy controls in identifying the smells. When controlling for anxiety, this group difference remained stable only for disgusting but not pleasant smells. An ef-fect of patients in different symptom dimensions on smell identification was also found. Conclusion: These findings suggest that in OCD, a specific dysfunction related to emotional appraisal of sensory stimu-li, in the absence of a sensory deficit, may be apparent. This emotional deficiency could stem from disruption in processing related to the orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) (German J Psychiatry 2010; 13 (3): 127–139).
    German Journal of Psychiatry 08/2010; 13(3):127-139.