Neural Predictors and Neural Changes Associated With Cognitive Behavior Therapy for Obssesive Compulsive Disorder

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    Institut d'Investigació Biomèdica de Bellvitge
Updated on 4 October 2022
behavior therapy
Accepts healthy volunteers


The goals of the project are 1) to understand what are the neural mechanisms involved in the psychological treatment of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) in children/adolescents and adults, 2) to assess potential differences in the neural mechanisms involved in the psychological treatment of OCD between children/adolescents and adults, and 3) to assess the effectiveness of intensive CBT for children/adolescents and adults with OCD.


Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a frequent and disabling disorder. Cognitive-behavior therapy (CBT) is the best treatment option available for OCD, although it achieves optimum results in less than half of the patients. The investigators will investigate the main neural circuits that predict CBT outcome in OCD and the neural changes associated with CBT in two separate randomized controlled trials (RCTs), one in an adult sample and another in a pediatric sample. In this two RCTs, OCD participants will be randomized to either intensive CBT (20 sessions in 1 month) by a experienced clinician or a waiting-list control (WLC) and will be assessed (by a blind assessor) and scanned before and after CBT. Patients will be offered CBT if they have been randomized to the WLC. At baseline, the investigators will also compare OCD patients with a group of healthy controls (HC). Secondary goals of the project include 1) assessing potential differences between children/adolescents and adults in the neural mechanisms involved in CBT for OCD; 2) assess the effectiveness of intensive CBT for children/adolescents and adults.

Condition Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
Treatment Cognitive-behavior therapy (psychological treatment)
Clinical Study IdentifierNCT04042038
SponsorInstitut d'Investigació Biomèdica de Bellvitge
Last Modified on4 October 2022


Yes No Not Sure

Inclusion Criteria

(same for Study 1 and Study 2)
Principal diagnosis of OCD
Y-BOCS or CYBOCS ≥ 16)
No current psychotropic medication (except benzodiacepines for sleep). 4 ) Age between 8 and 17 years (Study 1) and between 18 and 60 years (Study 2)

Exclusion Criteria

(same for Study 1 and Study 2
Current major depression or current/past psychosis, bipolar disorder or substance abuse
Developmental disorders (including autistic spectrum disorders)
To be pregnant or during breastfeeding
Current CBT; nt
Any severe medical disorder
Any contraindication for neuroimaging
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