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Research into age of onset in obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD) has indicated significant differences between patients with early and late onset of the disorder. However, multiple criteria have been used arbitrarily for differentiating between early- and late-onset OCD, rendering inconsistent results that are difficult to interpret.
In the current study, admixture analysis was conducted in a sample of 377 OC patients to determine the number of underlying populations of age of onset and associated demographic and clinical characteristics. Various measures of anxiety, depression, co-morbidity, autism, OCD, tics and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) symptoms were administered.
A bimodal age of onset was established and the best-fitting cut-off score between early and late age of onset was 20 years (early age of onset ⩽19 years). Patients with early age of onset were more likely to be single. Early age of onset patients demonstrated higher levels of OCD severity and increased symptoms on all OCD dimensions along with increased ADHD symptoms and higher rates of bipolar disorder.
It is suggested that 20 years is the recommended cut-off age for the determination of early versus late age of onset in OCD. Early age of onset is associated with a generally graver OCD clinical picture and increased ADHD symptoms and bipolar disorder rates, which may be related to greater functional implications of the disorder. We propose that age of onset could be an important marker for the subtyping of OCD.
Symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and depression are highly co-morbid following a traumatic event. Nevertheless, decisive evidence regarding the direction of the relationship between these clinical entities is missing.
The aim of the present study was to examine the nature of this relationship by comparing a synchronous change model (PTSD and depression are time synchronous, possibly stemming from a third common factor) with a demoralization model (i.e. PTSD symptoms causing depression) and a depressogenic model (i.e. depressive symptoms causing PTSD symptoms). Israeli adult victims of single-event traumas (n=156) were assessed on measures of PTSD and depression at 2, 4 and 12 weeks post-event.
A cross-lagged structural equation modeling (SEM) analysis provided results consistent with the synchronous change model and the depressogenic model.
Depressive symptoms may play an important role in the development of post-traumatic symptoms.
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