A controlled study of Faradic disruption of obsessive ideation in the treatment of obsessive neurosis

Kenny, Frank Townsend (1974) A controlled study of Faradic disruption of obsessive ideation in the treatment of obsessive neurosis. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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    Available under License - The author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.
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Abstract

Previously found successful clinical results led to a proposal that improvement in obsessive-compulsive symptoms could be effected by the application of an aversive stimulus (Faradic Disruption) to the images and thoughts that patients expressed about their symptoms (obsessive ideations). -- A controlled study was initiated in which an experimental group of patients suffering from obsessive neurosis received 30 sessions of Faradic Disruption over a three-month period and a waiting-list control group with the same diagnosis was delayed by three months before receiving treatment. An attempt at complete matching of subjects was only partially successful, and a final total of six subjects in the experimental group and four in the control group was achieved. -- Assessments of treatment progress were made through the use of patient subjective ratings of their symptoms, an independent psychiatric rating of symptoms, a psychiatric rating of general adjustment and two psychometric tests, the IPAT Self-Analysis Questionnaire and the Fear Survey Schedule. The latency of image formation, i.e. the length of time taken by the patient to form an image on command, was used as the main experimental measure. Assessments were made prior to treatment, after 10 treatments (of 1 month waiting control), after 20 treatments (2 months waiting control) and after 30 treatments (3 months waiting control). Follow-up was initiated on all patients successfully completing the treatment. -- Clinical and experimental results showed that Faradic Disruption was particularly effective in the reduction of target symptoms and produced a corresponding large increase in the latency of formation of experimentally treated images. The treatment also produced a general improvement in patients' adjustment and there was a tendency for the treatment effects to extend to non-target symptoms. There was no evidence that the therapeutic endeavour resulted in changes in general situational or trait anxiety. -- Follow-up for a median period of three months showed that clinical improvement persisted but some relapse was noted in one patient. -- In all, six of seven patients who completed treatment were rated as being considerably improved while one patient failed to improve. -- The nature of obsessive ideations in obsessive neurosis and the nature of the Faradic Disruption treatment are discussed.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/7326
Item ID: 7326
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 103-108.
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Psychology
Science, Faculty of > Psychology
Date: 1974
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Obsessive-compulsive disorder; Aversive stimuli

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