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Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder


Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is an illness characterized by recurrent obsessions and uncontrolled compulsions such as repetitive behavioral or mental acts ("rituals") that are performed in response to these obsessions. These ritualistic behaviors are believed to prevent or produce a future event. However, the rituals themselves have nothing to do with that event.

These obsessions and compulsions are time consuming and can significantly interfere with one's normal daily routine and ability to perform at their occupation. Symptoms may last for years or even decades and continue to progress if untreated.

OCD is thought to affect 2-3% of the general population or 4-6 million persons in the United States. OCD is the fourth most common psychiatric diagnosis in the United States, following phobias, substance abuse, and major depression. Studies have demonstrated a connection between OCD and altered levels of the neurotransmitter serotonin in the brain.

The treatment of OCD has significantly advanced in the past 10 years, and both pharmacologic and behavioral approaches are effective and important components in the management of OCD.

Treatment for OCD is usually multifaceted using both medication and counseling to control both the obsession and compulsion aspects of the disorder. Persons who do not respond well to these basic treatments may be considered candidates for other treatments.

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The Medifocus Guide on Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) provides answers to the following important questions and medical issues:

What Your Doctor Reads:

This MediFocus Guide contains an extensive listing of citations and abstracts of recent journal articles that have been published about this condition in trustworthy medical journals. This is the same type of information that is available to physicians and other health care professionals. A partial selection of journal articles that are abstracted in this MediFocus Guide includes:

MediFocus Guides... When You Need Trustworthy Medical Information

MediFocus.com understands that consumers who are facing serious medical issues need access to credible, up-to-date medical information to help them make informed health-care decisions. That's why we've developed the MediFocus Guides...the most advanced and trustworthy patient research guides for over 200 chronic and life-threatening conditions. Each MediFocus Guide includes a detailed overview of the condition including information about diagnosis, treatment options, cutting-edge research, and new developments; excerpts of important journal articles from the current medical literature focusing on standard treatments and treatment options; a directory of leading authors and medical institutions who specialize in the treatment of the condition; and a listing of organizations and support groups where you can obtain additional information about the illness.

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