Neuropsychological Study of Frontal Lobe Function in Psychotropic-Naive Children With Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

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The authors' goal was to evaluate cognition in children with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) early in their illness.


They administered neuropsychological tests to 21 pediatric patients with OCD and 21 healthy children matched for age, sex, socioeconomic status, and intelligence. The children with OCD were not depressed, and none had ever received psychotropic medication. The neuropsychological tests were used to assess the relationship between psychiatric symptoms and cognitive function.


The children with OCD performed as well as the healthy children on the neuropsychological tests. Psychiatric symptoms and cognitive performance were not related.


Nondepressed children with recently diagnosed OCD who had never received psychotropic medication demonstrated no cognitive impairment according to their performance on neuropsychological tests. The authors conclude that OCD symptoms may not interfere with cognitive abilities early in the illness.

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