Anxiety disorders in multiple sclerosis: significance of obsessive-compulsive disorder comorbidity

Amir Shabani, Jafar Attari Moghadam, Leily Panaghi, Arshia Seddigh


BACKGROUND: Considering reports on the associations of symptoms of anxiety disorders with multiple sclerosis (MS), this study aimed to 1) further evaluate various anxiety disorders systematically presenting in patients with MS and 2) compare the results with a control group.
METHODS: To assess anxiety disorders in patients with MS in a case-control study, 85 registered patients in the Iranian Multiple Sclerosis Society (IMSS) were randomly selected according to the inclusion criteria. A group of healthy individuals whose age and gender were matched with the case group were also selected. Both groups underwent a clinical interview based on DSM-IV diagnostic criteria.
RESULTS: Frequency of diagnosis of all anxiety disorders in the two groups was 22.4% and 7.1%, respectively, indicating a statistically significant difference. Frequency of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) was significantly higher in the case group (P<0.05). Relation of university education with the diagnosis of generalized anxiety disorder was significant too (P<0.05).
CONCLUSIONS: OCD in patients with MS was more frequently observed than in the control group.
KEY WORDS: Multiple sclerosis, obsessive-compulsive disorder, anxiety, neuropsychiatry.


Multiple sclerosis, obsessive-compulsive disorder, anxiety, neuropsychiatry.

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