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Phenomenology of Early Childhood Onset Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

  • Abbe M. Garcia
  • Jennifer B. Freeman
  • Michael B. Himle
  • Noah C. Berman
  • Alexandra K. Ogata
  • Janet Ng
  • Molly L. Choate-Summers
  • Henrietta Leonard
Article

Abstract

This paper describes the phenomenological features of early childhood onset obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD; defined as children meeting DSM-IV criteria for OCD with age of onset <8 years). Fifty-eight children (ages 4–8) were included in the sample. OCD and comorbid diagnoses were determined by structured interview, and OCD severity was measured using the Children’s Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale (CY-BOCS). Mean age of OCD onset was almost five, and mean age of presentation was between 6 and 7. Mean symptom severity was in the moderately severe range. Comorbidity and family history of OCD were common. Contamination and aggressive/catastrophic obsessions and washing and checking compulsions were endorsed most frequently. Results indicate that early childhood onset OCD may have a lower boy to girl ratio and lower rates of depressive disorders, but may be similar to later childhood onset OCD in terms of OCD symptom presentation and severity.

Keywords

Child OCD Phenomenology 

Notes

Acknowledgements

This study was supported in part by a grant from the National Institute of Mental Health (R21 MH079217). This paper is dedicated to the memory of Henrietta Leonard, M.D.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Abbe M. Garcia
    • 1
  • Jennifer B. Freeman
    • 1
  • Michael B. Himle
    • 2
  • Noah C. Berman
    • 1
  • Alexandra K. Ogata
    • 1
  • Janet Ng
    • 3
  • Molly L. Choate-Summers
    • 1
  • Henrietta Leonard
    • 1
  1. 1.Bradley/Hasbro Children’s Research CenterProvidenceUSA
  2. 2.University of North DakotaGrand ForksUSA
  3. 3.University of OregonEugeneUSA

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