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Superstitiousness in obsessive-compulsive disorder


Brugger, P; Viaud-Delmon, I (2010). Superstitiousness in obsessive-compulsive disorder. Dialogues in Clinical Neuroscience, 12(2):250-254.

Abstract

It has been speculated that superstitiousness and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) exist along a continuum. The distinction between superstitious behavior and superstitious belief, however, is crucial for any theoretical account of claimed associations between superstitiousness and OCD. By demonstrating that there is a dichotomy between behavior and belief, which is experimentally testable, we can differentiate superstitious behavior from superstitious belief, or magical ideation. Different brain circuits are responsible for these two forms of superstitiousness; thus, determining which type of superstition is prominent in the symptomatology of an individual patient may inform us about the primarily affected neurocognitive systems.

It has been speculated that superstitiousness and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) exist along a continuum. The distinction between superstitious behavior and superstitious belief, however, is crucial for any theoretical account of claimed associations between superstitiousness and OCD. By demonstrating that there is a dichotomy between behavior and belief, which is experimentally testable, we can differentiate superstitious behavior from superstitious belief, or magical ideation. Different brain circuits are responsible for these two forms of superstitiousness; thus, determining which type of superstition is prominent in the symptomatology of an individual patient may inform us about the primarily affected neurocognitive systems.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Neurology
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Language:English
Date:2010
Deposited On:16 Jul 2010 15:57
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 14:12
Publisher:Les Laboratoires Servier
ISSN:1294-8322
Related URLs:http://www.dialogues-cns.org
PubMed ID:20623929
Permanent URL: http://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-35069

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