Relationship between childhood sexual abuse and obsessive-compulsive disorder: Case control study

Asaf Caspi, Tali Vishne, Yehuda Sasson, Raz Gross, Avraham Livne, Joseph Zohar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Background: The psychiatric sequelae of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) is associated with a variety of psychiatric disorders, such as eating disorders, depression, posttraumatic-stress disorder and borderline personality disorder. This study examined the association of CSA and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) in adults. Methods: Frequency of CSA was examined among 30 OCD patients and in two control groups: 17 patients with panic disorder (PD) and 26 non-psychiatric rheumatic patients (NPRP). Study tool was a semi-structured interview. Results: A significantly higher frequency of CSA involving physical contact was found among the OCD (53.3%) and PD patients (52.9%) as compared to NPRP (23.1%). No significant differences were found in the frequencies of non-contact CSA. Limitations: Differences could partially be attributed to the tendency of psychiatric patients to provide personal information, especially when motivated to pinpoint an external factor for their illness. Conclusions: A positive association was found between contact-CSA and OCD as well as PD. While it is not definitely clear whether CSA is a unique entity or has influence similar to any other stressful life event, the findings of this study support further investigation of the role of contact CSA in OCD and PD, as well as in other psychiatric disorders.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)177-182
Number of pages6
JournalIsrael Journal of Psychiatry and Related Sciences
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes


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