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Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Obsessional thought are ideas, images or impulses that enter the individual’s mind again and again in a stereotyped form.

They are recognized as the individual’s own thoughts, even though they are involuntary and often repugnant. Common obsessions include fears of contamination, of harming other persons or sinning against God.

Compulsions are repetitive, purposeful, and intentional behaviours or mental acts performed in response to obsessions or according to certain rule that must be applied rigidly. Compulsions are meant to neutralize or reduce discomfort or to prevent a dreaded event or situation.

Autonomic anxiety symptoms are often present.

There is very frequent comorbidity with depression (about 80%) - suicidal thoughts. Obsessive-compulsory symptoms may appear in early stages of schizophrenia.

The life time prevalence: 2 - 3%. Equally common in men and women. The course is variable and more likely to be chronic.

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