Functional magnetic resonance imaging of symptom provocation in obsessive-compulsive disorder

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1996 Jul;53(7):595-606. doi: 10.1001/archpsyc.1996.01830070041008.


Background: The new technique of functional magnetic resonance imaging was used to investigate the mediating neuroanatomy of obsessive-compulsive disorder symptoms.

Methods: Ten patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder and 5 normal subjects were studied via functional magnetic resonance imaging during control and provoked conditions. Data analysis entailed parametric and nonparametric statistical mapping.

Results: Statistical maps (nonparametric; P < 10(-3)) showed activation for 70% or more of patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder in medial orbitofrontal, lateral frontal, anterior temporal, anterior cingulate, and insular cortex, as well as caudate, lenticulate, and amygdala. No normal subjects exhibited activation in any brain region.

Conclusions: Results of functional magnetic resonance imaging were consistent with past studies of obsessive-compulsive disorder that used other functional neuroimaging modalities. However, paralimbic and limbic activations were more prominent in the present study.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Affect / physiology
  • Brain / anatomy & histology*
  • Brain / blood supply
  • Brain / physiology
  • Humans
  • Limbic System / blood supply
  • Limbic System / physiology
  • Magnetic Resonance Angiography / statistics & numerical data
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / statistics & numerical data*
  • Models, Statistical
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder / diagnosis*
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder / etiology
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder / psychology
  • Regional Blood Flow
  • Statistics as Topic
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed, Single-Photon