Psychiatry and Clinical Psychopharmacology

Cognitive functions in patients with obsessive compulsive disorder

Psychiatry and Clinical Psychopharmacology 2014; 24: Supplement S23-S24
Read: 644 Published: 18 February 2021

The literature related to cognitive dysfunction in OCD is primarily focused on executive dysfunction. Most psychology studies on OCD have examined information-processing bias. OCD researchers analyze cognitive function based on neuropsychology testing and clinical observation in the psychiatry. The literature concerning differences in verbal memory performance between OCD patients and healthy controls is inconsistent. Verbal memory performance is different in OCD patients, as they code words during objective verbal memory tests, whereas healthy individuals tend to use an organizational strategy, such as semantic relationships. OCD patients have difficulty formulating an organizational strategy, but are able to implement one once formulated. The inability to formulate an organizational strategy for information coding might be related to executive dysfunction. Executive dysfunction appears to be the primary cognitive deficiency in OCD patients. Deficiencies related to memory are associated with faulty information processing and poor organizational strategy implementation. Most studies have reported that executive functions, including set shifting, verbal şuency, planning, and decision-making, are similar in OCD patients and controls. In addition, it is known that OCD patients make more perseverative errors, have more difficulty using feedback, and have delayed response during neurocognitive testing, all of which might be related to slow cognition or an increase in compulsive behavior in an effort to avoid making mistakes. The findings of neuroimaging studies support the existence of dysfunction in the frontostriatothalamic pathway in OCD. Response inhibition and decision-making are cognitive functions that should be the target of future OCD research.

EISSN 2475-0581