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Handbook on Obsessive-Compulsive and Related Disorders

Edited by Katharine A. Phillips, M.D., and Dan J. Stein, M.D., Ph.D.

  • ISBN 978-1-61537-027-6
  • Item #37027

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Obsessive-compulsive and related disorders (OCRDs) are both prevalent and a source of significant impairment for patients who suffer from them, yet they remain underrecognized and underdiagnosed. Handbook on Obsessive-Compulsive and Related Disorders provides comprehensive and cutting-edge coverage of OCRDs for clinicians and trainees in the context of the new classification framework established by the DSM-5. Chapters cover OCD, body dysmorphic disorder (BDD), hoarding disorder, trichotillomania (hair pulling disorder), excoriation (skin picking) disorder, and illness anxiety disorder, among other related conditions, ensuring that readers are current on both the research on and the standard of care for these illnesses. In addition, each chapter employs a logical and consistent structure, addressing diagnostic criteria and symptomatology, epidemiology, etiology and pathophysiology, comorbidities, course and prognosis, assessment and differential diagnosis, psychosocial impairment and suicidality, and other topics such as cultural and gender-related issues. Treatment approaches and considerations are explored in-depth.

The Handbook's useful features are many:

  • The first book focused on the OCRDs to be published since the development of DSM-5, it reflects a deep understanding of the disorders and the DSM-5 development process. Readers can depend on the utmost compatibility with DSM-5 because the book was edited by the chair of the DSM-5 work group, and the chair of the sub-work group, that oversaw the development of the OCRD category. The editors have provided a helpful introductory chapter that thoroughly addresses the changes from DSM-IV.
  • The book includes a chapter on disorders that were seriously considered for, though ultimately not included in, the DSM-5 OCRD chapter and for which research offers some support for a close relationship to OCD. These include tic disorders, illness anxiety disorder (hypochondriasis), and obsessive-compulsive personality disorder.
  • Case studies are provided in each chapter, as well as key clinical points, both of which help the reader understand, contextualize, and make use of the book's content. Recommended readings at the end of each chapter offer the opportunity to deepen understanding.

The costs to society of undiagnosed and/or untreated OCRD are high in both human and financial terms, and clinicians need to master all available tools to help patients and families understand and cope with these disorders. Handbook of Obsessive-Compulsive and Related Disorders deserves a prominent position—both in the literature and on the clinician's bookshelf.


  • Contributors
  • Foreword
  • Chapter 1. Introduction and Major Changes for the Obsessive-Compulsive and Related Disorders in DSM-5
  • Chapter 2. Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
  • Chapter 3. Body Dysmorphic Disorder
  • Chapter 4. Hoarding Disorder
  • Chapter 5. Trichotillomania (Hair-Pulling Disorder)
  • Chapter 6. Excoriation (Skin-Picking) Disorder
  • Chapter 7. Other Obsessive-Compulsive and Related Disorders in DSM-5
  • Chapter 8. Tic Disorders
  • Chapter 9. Illness Anxiety Disorder
  • Chapter 10. Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder
  • Chapter 11. Conclusions
  • Index


    Jonathan S. Abramowitz, Ph.D.
    Naomi A. Fineberg, M.B.B.S., M.A., M.R.C.Psych.
    Jon E. Grant, J.D., M.D., M.P.H.
    Eric Hollander, M.D.
    David C. Houghton, M.S.
    Sukhwinder Kaur, M.B.B.S., M.R.C.Psych.
    Sangeetha Kolli, M.B.B.S., M.R.C.Psych.
    David Mataix-Cols, Ph.D.
    Tara Mathews, Ph.D.
    Davis Mpavaenda, Dip.C.B.T., B.A.B.C.P. Accred.
    Ashley E. Nordsletten, Ph.D.
    Brian L. Odlaug, M.P.H.
    Mayumi Okuda, M.D.
    Katharine A. Phillips, M.D.
    Samar Reghunandanan, M.B.B.S., M.D., M.R.C.Psych.
    Lillian Reuman, M.A.
    H. Blair Simpson, M.D., Ph.D.
    Ivar Snorrason, M.A.
    Dan J. Stein, M.D., Ph.D.
    Michelle Tricamo, M.D.
    John T. Walkup, M.D.
    Douglas W. Woods, Ph.D.

About the Authors

Katharine A. Phillips, M.D., is Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at Alpert Medical School of Brown University; and Senior Research Scientist and Director of the Body Dysmorphic Disorder Program at Rhode Island Hospital in Providence, Rhode Island.

Dan J. Stein, M.D., Ph.D., is Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Cape Town in Cape Town, South Africa.

Obsessive-compulsive disorder, along with hoarding, skin picking, body dysmorphic disorder, hair pulling, and tics, form a group of related psychiatric conditions that have finally been put in one place diagnostically. This handbook collects the research on diagnosis, biology, and clinical treatment of each of these disorders in a readable and fascinating presentation. Clearly a book for practitioners, but patients will also benefit from putting these related disorders 'in place.' Highly recommended.—Judith L. Rapoport, M.D., Senior Investigator, Child Psychiatry Branch, National Institute of Mental Health, and author of The Boy Who Couldn't Stop Washing

This volume successfully brings together in one place the latest advances in our understanding of obsessive-compulsive and related disorders. While comprehensively covering research findings, the book is also remarkably user-friendly for ordinary clinicians, with nicely tabulated, organized, and practical information on the assessment and treatment of these common and often disabling conditions.—Harrison G. Pope, Jr., M.D., Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School

This book is a marvelous achievement, invaluable for both clinicians and researchers! The editors, Drs. Katharine Phillips and Dan Stein, have gathered foremost experts to summarize current knowledge regarding all the DSM-5 Obsessive-Compulsive and Related Disorders, and the disorders that were strong candidates for inclusion, e.g., tic disorders, illness anxiety disorder (formerly hypochondriasis) and obsessive-compulsive personality disorder. This comprehensive text is richly supplied with illustrative cases, useful screening and severity measures, well-designed summary tables, pointers to helpful websites, and thoughtful reviews of differential diagnosis, comorbidity, course, familial, genetic and environmental risk factors, neural substrates, biomarkers, and of treatments, psychotherapeutic and psychopharmacological as well as psychosocial and newer biological interventions. Clinicians who consult this sound guide will find their ability to alleviate the human suffering caused by these often missed, painful and life-impairing disorders magnified greatly. Researchers will be guided toward the gaps in our knowledge, which, if bridged, offer great gains in treatment effectiveness.—Lorrin Koran, M.D.

This Handbook has a story that has its roots in the text by Eric Hollander, Joseph Zohar, Paul J. Sirovatka & Darrel A. Regier, Obsessive-Compulsive Spectrum Disorders. Refining the Research Agenda for DSM-V (Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Publishing, 2011), and in the innovations that were introduced with the DSM-5: in particular, the inclusion of obsessive compulsive disorder in a separate sector compared to that in which it was previously placed, ie the area of anxiety disorders. This change, in the opinion of the authors, has a significant impact on improving the way in which clinicians diagnose and treat patients who present the broad spectrum of situations that revolve around obsessive and compulsive issues. But also, researchers can find in this new arrangement - which, it should be remembered, includes different configurations in addition to the classic obsessive-compulsive disorder - a different and more useful basic framework (see pp. 271-306 of the DSM-5. and statistics of mental disorders Milan: Raffaello Cortina, 2014).

The eleven chapters of the text, written by twenty-two authors who have all been involved in the work of the Obsessive-Compulsive Spectrum Sub-Work Group for the development of the DSM-5, covers a wide range of clinical situations (from accumulation disorders to tic, trichotillomania and excoriation disorders), especially considering the fundamental aspects of diagnosis, differential diagnosis and treatment. About this second point the indication that runs through the entire text is that of cognitive-behavioral therapy (Cognitive-Bahavioral Therapy [CBT]), considered as the first-line treatment together with the latest generation drugs, selective inhibitors of the re-uptake of serotonin (known as SSRI, from the English Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors).

A modest space is then reserved for what is called psychoeducation, while psychodynamic therapy is mentioned en passant only once and critically. The interest in the complex of obsessive-compulsive disorders also arises from the spread of these problems and from the frequent situation of comorbidity (especially anxiety, depressive and bipolar disorders). The age of onset is around nineteen years and if it is not treated this disorder tends to fluctuate, exacerbating, with a high possibility of becoming chronic. Several authors of the text emphasize the high cost (social and financial) paid by the company because of the impediments that force patients affected by this condition to fail to cope with normal life commitments: as stated in the DSM-5, we estimates that, at world level, the percentage of the affected population is between 1.1% and 1.8%, with a slight prevalence of females on males, observing that the onset in the male population is often precocious, ie placed in the childhood age. The text also includes three chapters dealing with topics strongly related to obsessive and compulsive disorders, but which have been placed in other areas of the Manual in the DSM-5: tic disorders, the new version of hypochondria (called Anxiety Disorder of disease ) and obsessive-compulsive personality disorder. On some topics related to the topic covered in the text it may be useful to consult Trichotillomania, Skin Picking, and Other Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors, signed by Jon E. Grant, Dan J. Stein, Douglas W. Woods & Nancy J. Keuthen (Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Publishing, 2012).—Psicoterapia e Scienze Umane, 2017, Vol. 51, No. 1.

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