Obsessive-compulsive disorder in children and adolescents

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Background: Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a common psychiatric condition that usually emerges during childhood or adolescence. Over 80% of individuals with OCD have their onset before age 18 years. Epidemiologic studies suggest a prevalence of 1-2% for adolescents. Method: This article reviews current knowledge of paediatric OCD in the following areas: age of onset, nosology and classification, subtypes, prevalence, aetiology, pathophysiology, assessment, prognosis and treatment. Results: Essential components of treatment include long-term commitment, care management and illness education. Specific components of treatment include cognitive- behavioural therapy, parent behaviour management training and medication. Conclusions: The most effective treatments are selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (e.g. fluvoxamine, sertraline) and exposure/response prevention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)91-96
Number of pages6
JournalBritish Journal of Psychiatry
Issue numberSUPPL. 35
StatePublished - Jan 1 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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