A review on quality of life and depression in obsessive-compulsive disorder

Steffen Moritz*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


Quality of life (QoL) is increasingly recognized as a pivotal outcome parameter in research on obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). While the concept remains somewhat ill-defined, there is now little dispute that the patients' personal goals deserve foremost consideration during the course of treatment as the primary aim of treatment should be relief from individual despair, which is related but by no means synonymous to symptom reduction. Studies using generic (ie, illness-unspecific) instruments have confirmed poor QoL in OCD patients across a wide range of domains, especially with respect to social, work role functioning, and mental health aspects. Scores are sometimes as low as those obtained by patients with schizophrenia. Depression and obsessions are the symptom clusters that most strongly contribute to low QoL. Findings from a novel survey of 105 OCD participants point to multiple daily life problems, poor work status, and tense social networks in these patients. In order to achieve therapeutic success and improve QoL, functional problems at work and comorbid disorders such as secondary depression and physical impairments should be targeted. While successful treatment sometimes positively impacts well-being, in some studies symptom decline did not translate into improved QoL.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16-22
Number of pages7
JournalCNS Spectrums
Issue number9 SUPPL. 14
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2008
Externally publishedYes


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