A case report of obsessive-compulsive disorder following acute disseminated encephalomyelitis

Pediatrics. 2013 Sep;132(3):e771-4. doi: 10.1542/peds.2012-2876. Epub 2013 Aug 5.


We present a case of a boy who developed obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) shortly after an episode of acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (ADEM). To our knowledge, this is the first report of the development of OCD in a child who has had ADEM. This presentation is consistent with our understanding of OCD as a complex genetic disease involving the cerebral white matter tracts, and may indicate a potential pathway for the development of OCD in genetically vulnerable individuals or a shared trigger for the development of pediatric acute-onset neuropsychiatric syndrome and ADEM.

Keywords: demyelinating diseases; obsessive-compulsive disorder; pediatrics.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents / therapeutic use
  • Corpus Callosum / pathology
  • Dominance, Cerebral / physiology
  • Encephalomyelitis, Acute Disseminated / diagnosis*
  • Encephalomyelitis, Acute Disseminated / drug therapy
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Frontal Lobe / pathology
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Methylprednisolone / therapeutic use
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder / diagnosis*
  • Wechsler Scales
  • Young Adult


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents
  • Methylprednisolone