OCD Case Study

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OCD Case Study

Background of the Problem

The case outlines obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) in children. The child in viewpoint has had OCD from the age of 9, but his OCD was remitted at the age of 12 and later reemerged at age 16. The focus on the child provides observation in the development and cause of OCD. According to the study, OCD is caused by biologically motivated progressions in children. Moreover, environmental factors also affect psychopathology of OCD patients. Childhood apprehension disorders can last for long and can be allied with the development of other mental conditions (Geffken, Sajid, and Macnaughton, 2005). Clinically stated, teenagers that had been diagnosed with OCD for a period of 2 to 7 years establishing that of individuals assessed for a second time, 68% which translated to two-thirds of the total, had OCD. Lenane, Swedo, and Leonard (1993) sampled children who had been clinically referred with OCD subsequently after being administered with Clomipramine and found that 43% had OCD in the period of 2 to 7 years, while only 6% met conditions for true remission. Moreover, others had subclinical symptoms of OCD. Another study by Thomsen and Mikkelson (1995) was carried out on children who had OCD from 1½ to 5 years, finding one half of them reserved their diagnosis of OCD in the follow-up. In a study carried out by Bergetal (1989) on non-referred children in a community sample, the results were that of the children that had OCD or associated obsessive-compulsive disorders at the beginning of the investigation had an extensive percentage with the disorder two years on. The description of precursor behavior to the inception of OCD is described in Marvin’s case as a chocking phobia or fixation in seeking compulsive reassurance and large objects swallowing.



The Problem

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is disorders whereby an individual exhibits perverse thinking, panics or becomes anxious thus attempts to cope by executing a ritual habit to ease their anxiety. In this case, the child has a choking phobia, obsession with swallowing large objects and seeks compulsive reassurance. The child’s OCD was further worsened by the fact that his mother was also unstable. Moreover, inconsistency in receiving medical care worsened the situation. Hence, it caused the reoccurrence of OCD in the child. The constant repetitive actions help the child in being able to manage their anxiety. The presence of OCD in children creates obsessive contemplations and compulsive rituals which deter the performance of daily activities of these children. According to statistics 1 of 200 children or adults has OCD. This problem is usually diagnosed by psychiatrists or other mental health practitioners following a psychiatric evaluation.

Plan for Solving the Problem

Introducing learning based treatment to the patient to treat the clinical problem. Here the child is made to understand what is happening to them. This gives them an insight into their problem and telling them they are not the only ones provides a sense of relief. Give the child tools that may help them cope with anxiety rather than eliminate anxiety. Induce exposure and response preventions (ERP) which works by assisting children to face things that usually trigger their anxiety in structured, incremental steps, and in a safe environment. Often, it allows children to experience anxiety and distress without resulting to compulsions with the therapists’ help. A combination of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and psychopharmacological treatment are used in severe cases such as in the case of Marvin.


Application of Solution

The first stage is behavioral treatment whereby patients encounter sources of their obsessions and learn ways of managing associated rituals until they can resist compulsions. In this case, Marvin had to learn what was causing him to have a choking phobia. Patients are given time after initial treatment to check if a treatment method is working. If there is the unavailability of behavioral treatment such as the case when Marvin goes to live with his mother or in this case the severity of Marvin’s OCD drug treatment is recommended that is the use of SSRIs. Moreover, a combination of drug treatment and prevention therapy is used o that when drugs are withdrawn patients can be able to cope better with environmental triggers.


A final assessment is needed by a psychiatrist to determine whether one is suffering from severe OCD. What is illustrated in the case study is how learning-based treatment and up-to-date psychotropic methodologies can be joined in the treatment of OCD with its inception in childhood.


References Lists

Geffken, G., Sajid, M. and Macnaughton, K., 2005. The course of childhood OCD, its antecedents, onset, comorbidities, remission, and reemergence: A 12-year case report. Clinical Case Studies4(4), pp.380-394.