A further investigation of cognitive inhibition in obsessive-compulsive disorder and other anxiety disorders

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Colleges, School and Institutes


Previous research has consistently demonstrated reduced negative priming effects in patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) when compared with patients exhibiting other anxiety disorders (OAD). The current study investigates the processing of negative priming stimuli at different presentation speeds. In addition to comparing OCD and OAD subjects, the former group is subdivided into high and low compulsive checkers. Results indicate that the negative priming deficit in OCD subjects is limited to the fastest presentation speeds, though in checkers this deficit is also evident at longer presentation rates. These data are compared with previous research in the White Bears thought suppression paradigm with the same subjects. It is concluded that the results across these experimental paradigms are consistent and allude to a fundamental preattentive deficit of cognitive inhibition in OCD subjects generally and most significantly in OCD checkers.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)535-542
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1995