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Are There Interactions Among Dysfunctional Beliefs in Obsessive Compulsive Disorder?

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Contemporary cognitive models of obsessive-compulsive disorder emphasize the importance of various types of dysfunctional beliefs, such as beliefs about inflated responsibility, perfectionism and the importance of controlling one's thoughts. These beliefs have been conceptualized as main effects, each influencing obsessive-compulsive symptoms independent of the contributions of other beliefs. It is not known whether beliefs interact with one another in their influence on obsessive-compulsive symptoms. To investigate this issue, data from 248 obsessive-compulsive disorder patients were analyzed. Dependent variables were the factor scores on the 4 Padua Inventory subscales. Predictor variables were the factor scores from the 3 factors (inflated responsibility, perfectionism and controlling one's thoughts) of the Obsessive Beliefs Questionnaire and their 2- and 3-way interactions. Regression analyses revealed significant main effects; in almost all analyses one or more of inflated responsibility, perfectionism, and controlling one's thoughts factors predicted scores on the Padua factors even after controlling for general distress. There was no evidence that beliefs interact in their effects on obsessive-compulsive symptoms, thereby providing a relatively unusual instance in which a simpler explanation (main effects only) is just as powerful as a more complex model.
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Keywords: cognitive‐behavioral theories; dysfunctional beliefs; obsessive‐compulsive disorder

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Fordham University, New York, USA

Publication date: 2005-06-01

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