Treatments for Obsessive-compulsive disorder


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Treatment list for Obsessive-compulsive disorder: The list of treatments mentioned in various sources for Obsessive-compulsive disorder includes the following list. Always seek professional medical advice about any treatment or change in treatment plans.

Treatments of Obsessive-compulsive disorder discussion: There are several medications and behavioral treatments that can benefit people with OCD. A combination of the two treatments is often helpful for most patients. Some individuals respond best to one therapy, some to another. Two medications that have been found effective in treating OCD are clomipramine and fluoxetine. A number of others are showing promise however, and may soon be available.

Behavioral therapy, specifically a type called exposure and response prevention, has also proven useful for treating OCD. It involves exposing the person to whatever triggers the problem and then helping him or her forego the usual ritual -- for instance, having the person touch something dirty and then not wash her hands. This therapy is often successful in patients who have completed a behavioral therapy program, though results have been less favorable in some people who have both OCD and depression. 1

Several medications have been proven effective in helping people with OCD: clomipramine, fluoxetine, fluvoxamine, sertraline, and paroxetine. If one drug is not effective, others should be tried. A number of other medications are currently being studied. A type of behavioral therapy known as "exposure and response prevention" is very useful for treating OCD. In this approach, a person is deliberately and voluntarily exposed to whatever triggers the obsessive thoughts, and then is taught techniques to avoid performing the compulsive rituals and to deal with the anxiety. 2

Footnotes:
1. excerpt from Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: NWHIC
2. excerpt from Facts about Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: NIMH

Last revision: July 1, 2003

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