What is the pathophysiology of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)?

Updated: May 17, 2018
  • Author: William M Greenberg, MD; Chief Editor: David Bienenfeld, MD  more...
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Answer

The fact that obsessive-compulsive symptoms seem to often take very stereotypic forms has led some to hypothesize that the pathologic disturbance causing OCD may be disinhibiting and exaggerating some built-in behavioral potential that humans have that, under other ancestral circumstances, would have an adaptive function (eg, primate grooming rituals).


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