Inhibition of return in patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder

Steffen Moritz*, Adrian Von Mühlenen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Citations (Scopus)


The present study is aimed at replicating and extending previous results by Nelson et al. [Psychiatry Res. 49 (1993) 183], who found decreased inhibition of return (IOR) in patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Thirty OCD patients, 14 psychiatric, and 14 healthy controls participated in a visual cueing experiment. The task required detection of a target stimulus at one of two possible locations. Prior to the target, an uninformative cue appeared at one of these two locations. The Stimulus Onset Asynchrony (SOA) between the cue and the target was systematically varied. We were especially interested in whether severity of OCD symptoms would be negatively correlated with inhibition for previously occupied locations. In accordance with prior research on healthy participants all groups displayed a comparable response pattern: facilitation at the short SOA condition and increasing IOR for the longer SOA conditions. Medication, comorbid depression, and OCD severity did not consistently moderate these effects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)117-126
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Anxiety Disorders
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Attention
  • Disinhibition
  • Inhibition of return
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder

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