The relationship between eating disorders and OCD symptom dimensions: An explorative study in a large sample of patients with OCD

Unna N. Danner*, Lot C. Sternheim, Patricia van Oppen, Gert Jan Hendriks, Ton J.L.M. van Balkom, Danielle C. Cath

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    1 Citation (Scopus)
    72 Downloads (Pure)

    Abstract

    Objectives: This study aimed to describe lifetime and current rates of occurrence of comorbid eating disorders (ED) in a large clinical OCD sample, and to investigate whether comorbid ED in OCD (OCD+ED) are associated with specific demographic, somatic or clinical characteristics.

    Method: Data were obtained from the Netherlands Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Association (NOCDA) study. A sample of 419 participants with lifetime OCD was evaluated on co-occurrence with ED.

    Results: Lifetime comorbidity with ED occurred in 44 patients (10.5% of the sample), a frequency that exceeds prevalence rates in the normal population. Patients with OCD+ED were on average overweight compared to OCD-ED. The OCD+ED group reported more aggression and checking symptoms and had a younger age of onset of OCD. Further, more comorbidity with MDD, social phobia, PTSD, and depression and anxiety symptoms was reported.

    Conclusion: Patients with OCD+ED seem to clinically represent a sub-group of OCD with more severe psychopathology, and specifically with trauma-related factors and comorbid anxiety and depressive symptoms. Future studies using a longitudinal design should focus on whether patients with OCD+ED differ regarding course characteristics from patients with OCD-ED. Finally, comorbidity with depression, social anxiety and trauma should be taken into account in treatment of patients with OCD+ED.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number100759
    Number of pages8
    JournalJournal of obsessive-Compulsive and related disorders
    Volume35
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Oct-2022

    Keywords

    • Anorexia nervosa
    • Binge eating disorder
    • Co-morbidity
    • Eating disorders
    • Obsessive compulsive disorder
    • Prevalence

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