Co-morbid presentations of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and Symptoms in a Clinical High Risk for Psychosis Sample

James Green, BA

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center – Research Assistant
James Green poster

Scientific Abstract

Background: There may be a significant co-morbidity rate between OCD and Psychosis Spectrum diagnoses. Previous research has begun to explore the symptom presentations, etiology, and effects that OCD has on patients with psychosis spectrum illnesses. This study explores the co-morbidity rates, differences in symptom presentation, and impact of OCD on individuals diagnosed with Clinical High Risk for Psychosis (CHR-P).

Methods: Baseline and 6 month data from 192 clients ages 12-30 diagnosed with CHR-p at the CEDAR Clinic was analyzed. Data was collected on clinical variables using reliable and validated instruments. Significant differences were explored between OCD and non-OCD clients using independent t-tests and pearson correlations. Symptom change over time was analyzed using paired samples t-tests. Unique OCD presentations were explored using exploratory factor analysis. Factor scores were extracted and correlated with other symptoms to explore unique correlations between unique OCD presentations and other clinical variables.

Results: 13.5 % of CHR-p clients met for DSM-V OCD criteria, and the average of obsessive compulsive symptoms (OCS) in the sample was above the significant cutoff. OCD clients had lower hopelessness (p = 0.001) and higher reflectiveness (p = 0.01). OCS was correlated with depression (p <0.001) and social anxiety (p < 0.001). OCD vs. Non-OCD clients did not differ in effect of treatment over 6 months at CEDAR. Both groups after 6 months had significantly lower unusual thought content (p < 0.001) , perceptual abnormalities (p < 0.001) , and attenuated psychosis symptoms (p < 0.001). Unique OCD related to intrusive thoughts were significantly correlated with unusual thought content (p < 0.005), attenuated positive symptoms (p <0.001), and social anxiety (p < 0.001), while unique OCD related to checking and counting was significantly correlated with depression (p < 0.005) and social anxiety (p < 0.05).

Conclusion: High co-morbidity rates and unique clinical differences indicate a need for specialized OCD treatment in CHR-p clinics and further researching the effects of OCD on people living with psychosis and psychosis risk symptoms.

Live Zoom Session – March 9th

research Areas


James Green, BA, Victoria Lisowski, Madison Barber, Michelle West, PhD, Shadi Shariff, BA, Michelle-Friedman-Yakoobian, PhD

Principal Investigator

Michelle-Friedman-Yakoobian, PhD

Affiliated Website