Click here to download

Attentional bias towards stimuli concerning guilt in obsessive-compulsive disorder: a preliminary study
Journal Title: QUADERNI DI PSICOTERAPIA COGNITIVA 
Author/s: Teresa Cosentino, Enrico Iuliano, Angelo Saliani, Claudia Perdighe, Francesco Mancini 
Year:  2017 Issue: 41 Language: Italian 
Pages:  13 Pg. 5-17 FullText PDF:  163 KB
DOI:  10.3280/QPC2017-041001
(DOI is like a bar code for intellectual property: to have more infomation:  clicca qui   and here 


Several studies and clinical observations support the hypothesis that the obsessive activity is intended to prevent the possibility of being guilty, experience judged intolerable and unacceptable from such patients. This study fits into this line of research. Starting from the evidence that in most anxiety disorders there was a selective attention directed towards the stimuli inherent threat feared, we expected to find in obsessive patients the presence of an attentional bias towards stimuli inherent to guilt. To assess the presence of attentional bias, sixteen subjects with obsessive-compulsive disorder and sixteen non-clinical control subjects underwent a Stroop Emotional Test based on stimulus words concerning guilt and neutral stimulus words. The results show that only the obsessive-compulsive subjects had greater slowness in naming the color of the words concerning guilt compared to the neutral ones. These results, although preliminary as derived from a small sample of subjects, seem to indicate that the patient’s obsessive attention is selectively directed towards the stimuli inherent guilt, confirming the patient’s sensitivity to this experience. The clinical implications of this phenomenon and the desirable future developments of this study are discussed.
Keywords: Obsessive-compulsive disorder, guilt, attentional bias, Stroop Emotional Test, anxiety disorders.

  1. American Psychiatric Association (APA) (2013). Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Fifth Edition. Washington: American Psychiatric Association.
  2. Lang A.J., Sarmiento J. (2004). Relationship of attentional bias to anxiety sensivity and panic. Depression and Anxiety, 20: 190-194.
  3. Amir N., Elias J., Klumpp H., Pezeworski A. (2003). Attentional bias to threat in social phobia: Facilitated processing of threat or difficulty disengaging attention from threat. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 41: 1325-1335.
  4. Amir N., Freshman M., Foa E. (2002). Enhanced Stroop interference for social phobia. Journal of Anxiety Disorders, 16: 1-9.
  5. Austin J.T., Vancouver J.B. (1996). Goal constructs in psychology: Structure, process, and content. Psychological Bulletin, 120: 338-375.
  6. Bar-Haim Y., Lamy D., Pergamin L., Bakermans-Kranenburg, van Ijzendoorn
  7. M.H. (2007). Threat-related attentional bias in anxious and non-anxious individuals: a meta-analytic study. Psychological Bulletin, 133: 1-24., 10.1037/0033-2909.133.1.DOI: 10.1037/0033-2909.133.1.
  8. Beck A.T., Emery G., Greenberg R.L. (1985). Anxiety disorders and phobias: A cognitive perspective. New York: Basic Books Press.
  9. Becker E.S., Rinck M., Margraf I., Roth W.T. (2001). The Emotional Stroop effect in anxiety disorder: General emotionality or disorder specificity? Journal of Anxiety Disorders, 15: 147-155.
  10. Cosentino T., D’Olimpio F., Perdighe C., Romano G., Saliani A.M., Mancini F. (2012). Acceptance of being guilty in the treatment of obsessive-compulsive disorder. Psicoterapia Cognitiva e Comportamentale, Monograph Supplement: 39-56.
  11. Cosentino T., Mancini F. (2012). “Do i love her or not?!” intervention on fear of being despised: an obsessive-compulsive disorder case presentation. Psicoterapia Cognitiva e Comportamentale, 18: 157-171.
  12. Dobson K.S., Dozois D.J.A. (2004). Attentional bias in eating disorder: Ameta-analy- tic review of Stroop performance. Clinical Psychology Review, 23: 1001-22.
  13. D’Olimpio F., Mancini F. (2014). Role of Deontological Guilt in Obsessive- Compulsive Disorder – Like Checking and Washing Behaviors. Clinical Psychological Science, 2: 727-739.
  14. Eysenck M.W., Calvo M.G. (1992). Anxiety and performance: The processing efficiency theory. Cognition and Emotion, 6: 409-434.
  15. Eysenck M.W., Keane M.T. (2010). Cognitive psychology: A student’s handbook. New York: Psychology Press.
  16. First M.B., Michael B., Spitzer R.L., Robert L., Gibbon M.W., Janet B.W. (2002). Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV-TR Axis I Disorders, Research Version, Non-patient Edition (SCID-I/NP). New York: Biometrics Research, New York State Psychiatric Institute.
  17. First M.B., Spitzer R.L., Gibbon M.W., Williams J.B.W. (1997). Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis I Disorders Patient Edition (SCID-I/P, version 2.0, 4/97 revision). New York: Biometrics Research Department, New York State Psychiatric Institute.
  18. Folk C.L., Remington R.W. (2008). Bottom-up priming of top-down control settings. Visual Cognition, 16: 215-231.
  19. Folk C.L., Remington R.W., Johnston, J.C. (1992). Involuntary covert orienting is contingent on attentional control settings. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 18: 1030-1044.
  20. Gangemi A., Mancini F., van den Hout M. (2007). Feeling guilty as a source of information about threat and performance. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 45: 2387-2396.
  21. Koster E.H.W., Crombez G., Van Damme S., Verschuere B., De Houwer J. (2004).
  22. Does imminent threat capture and hold attention? Emotion, 4: 312-317.
  23. Koster E.H.W., Crombez G., Van Damme S., Verschuere B., De Houwer J. (2005). Signals for threat modulate attentional capture and holding: fear-conditioning and extinction during the exogenous cueing task. Cognition and Emotion, 19: 771-780.
  24. LeDoux J.E. (1996). The emotional brain. New York: Simon & Schuster. Lopatcka C., Rachman S. (1995). Perceived responsibility compulsive and checking: an experimental analysis. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 33: 673-684.
  25. MacLeod C., Mathews A., Tata P. (1986). Attentional bias in emotional disorders. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 95: 15-20.
  26. Mancini F., D’Olimpio F., Cieri L. (2003). Manipulation of responsibility in non-clinical subjects: Does expectation of failure exacerbate obsessive-compulsive behaviours?. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 42: 449-457.
  27. Mancini F., Gangemi A. (2011). Fear of deontological guilt and fear of contamination in obsessive compulsive patient. Psicoterapia Cognitiva e Comportamentale, 17, 3: 395-404.
  28. Mogg K., Bradley B.P., Dixon C., Fisher H.T., McWilliams A. (2000). Trait anxiety, defensiveness and selective processing of threat: an investigation using two measures of attentional bias. Personality and Individual Differences, 28: 1063-1077.
  29. Mogg K., Bradley B.P. (2006). Time course of attentional bias for relevant pictures in spider-fearful individuals. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 44: 1241-1250.
  30. Nakao T., Nakagawa A., Yoshiura T., Nakatani E., Nabeyama M., Yoshizato C., Kudoh A., Tada K., Yoshioka K., Kawamoto M., Togao O., Kanba S. (2005). Brain activation of patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder during neuro- psychological and symptom provocation tasks before and after symptom improvement: A functional magnetic resonance imaging study. Biological Psychiatry, 57: 901-910.
  31. Bias attentivo verso gli stimoli inerenti la colpa nel disturbo ossessivo-compulsivo: un’indagine preliminare
  32. Perdighe C., Mancini F. (2012). A case report of obsessive-compulsive disorder: reduce fear of guilt to reduce symptoms. Psicoterapia Cognitiva e Comportamentale, 18: 343-356.
  33. Pineles L.S., Shiperd J.C., Welch L.P., Yovel I. (2007). The role of attentional bias in PTSD: Is it interference or facilitation? Behaviour Research and Therapy, 45: 1903-1913.
  34. Rachman S. (2006). Fear of contamination: assessment and treatment. New York: Oxford University Press Inc.
  35. Rothermund K., Wentura D., Bak P.M. (2001). Automatic attention to stimuli signalling chances and dangers: Moderating effects of positive and negative goal and action contexts. Cognition and Emotion, 15: 231-248., 10.1080/026999300420007DOI: 10.1080/026999300420007
  36. Salkovskis P.M. (1985). Obsessive-compulsive problems: a cognitive-behavioral analysis. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 23: 571-583.
  37. Salkovskis P.M., Forrester E. (2002). Responsibility. In: Frost R.O., Steketee G. (eds.), Cognitive approaches to obsessions and compulsions. Oxford: Elsevier Science.
  38. Schienle A., Schäfer A., Stark R., Walter B., Vaitl D. (2005). Neural responses of OCD patients towards disorder-relevant, generally disgustinducing and fear- inducing pictures. International Journal of Psychophysiology, 57: 69-77.
  39. Shafran R. (1997). The manipulation of responsibility in obsessive-compulsive disorder. British Journal of Clinical Psychology, 36: 397-407.
  40. Shafran R., Lee M., Cooper Z., Palmer R.L., Fairbum C.G. (2007). Attentional bias in eating disorder. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 40: 369-380.
  41. Shafran R., Lee M., Cooper Z., Palmer R.L., Fairbum C.G. (2008). Effect of psychological treatment on Attentional bias in eating disorder. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 41: 348-354.
  42. Shapiro L.J., Stewart E.S. (2011). Pathological guilt: a persistent yet overlooked treatment factor in obsessive-compulsive disorder. Annual Clinical Psychiatry, 23: 63-70.
  43. Smith S.D., Most S.B., Newsome L.A., Zald D.H. (2006). An emotion-induced attentional blink elicited by aversively conditioned stimuli. Emotion, 6: 523- 527., 10.1037/1528-3542.6.3.52DOI: 10.1037/1528-3542.6.3.52
  44. Van Oppen P., Arntz A. (1994). Cognitive therapy for obsessive-compulsive disorder. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 32: 79-87.
  45. Vogt J., Lozo L., Koster E.H., De Houwer J. (2011). On the role of goal relevance in emotional attention: disgust evokes early attention to cleanliness. Cognition and Emotion, 25: 466-77., 10.1080/02699931.2010.53261DOI: 10.1080/02699931.2010.53261
  46. Williams J.M.G., Mathews A., MacLeod C. (1996). The emotional Stroop task and psychopathology. Psychological Bulletin, 120: 3-24.

Teresa Cosentino, Enrico Iuliano, Angelo Saliani, Claudia Perdighe, Francesco Mancini, Attentional bias towards stimuli concerning guilt in obsessive-compulsive disorder: a preliminary study in "QUADERNI DI PSICOTERAPIA COGNITIVA" 41/2017, pp. 5-17, DOI:10.3280/QPC2017-041001

   

FrancoAngeli is a member of Publishers International Linking Association a not for profit orgasnization wich runs the CrossRef service, enabing links to and from online scholarly content