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January 1947

THE ELECTROENCEPHALOGRAM AND PERSONALITY ORGANIZATION IN THE OBSESSIVE-COMPULSIVE REACTIONS

Author Affiliations

NEW YORK

From the New York Hospital and the Department of Psychiatry, Cornell University Medical College.

Arch NeurPsych. 1947;57(1):71-77. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1947.02300240087004
Abstract

IT HAS been observed by Pacella and others1 that a relatively high percentage of patients with obsessive-compulsive reactions have abnormal electroencephalograms. The present study was made to determine the factors responsible for the presence or absence of abnormal electroencephalographic findings in this group of patients. A promising lead was available in the paper of Simons and Diethelm,2 in which it was reported that abnormal electroencephalograms were common in certain groups of psychopathic personalities. On the basis of these findings, a study of the obsessive-compulsive reactions from the standpoint of underlying personality organization seemed indicated.

PRESENT INVESTIGATION  The case material for the present study consisted of 24 patients between the ages of 13 and 45 years, all of whom showed well marked obsessive-compulsive symptoms. Many varieties of compulsive actions were encountered, including compulsive washing, cleaning, dressing and toilet rituals, repetition of words, counting, touching and looking. Obsessive phenomena included

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