Cognitions in children with OCD: a pilot study for age specific relations with severity

Cognitive theory, postulates that dysfunctional cognitions play a maintaining or even aetiological role in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). In this study it was hypothesised that if distorted cognitions play a central role in OCD, there should be a relation between cognitive measures and the severity of the obsessive-compulsive symptoms in a childhood OCD sample. A group of 39 children and adolescents with a primary diagnosis OCD was measured on the CY-BOCS, and on the cognitive questionnaires the MTQ, and the CATS. The findings suggest no relation between the severity of the OCD and magical thinking. In the younger group aged 8–12 years (n = 18) no relations with any negative thoughts were found. In the older group, aged 13–18 years (n = 21), relations between the CY-BOCS Obsession scale and the CATS subscales Physical Threat, Social Threat and Personal Failure were found. Compared to a previously published community sample, the MTQ scores in the present sample are lower. The CATS scores for the OCD sample were found to be lower than most clinical comparison groups, which is especially true for the CATS Hostility subscale. Issues about criterion contamination and explanatory hypothesis about the age specific relation are addressed.

L. M. Verhaak, & E. de Haan | 2007
In: European Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 1018-8827 | 16 | 6 | 353-361