The New Jersey Medical School - Center for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Related Disorders

Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) presents primarily with symptoms of obsessions and compulsions that can significantly affect the individual’s functioning as well as having a negative impact on a productive life. Obsessions are recurrent thoughts, impulses or images that are often experienced as being intrusive and can cause distress. Attempts to suppress obsessions are often made. An example of obsession is symmetry, which is a need to have things in a particular order.  If the order does not exist, this can result in distress. Compulsions are repetitive behaviors the person feels the urge to engage in often in a response to an obsession.

Although OCD can remain active throughout life, the age at which there is the greatest risk of developing the disorder tends to be adolescence through middle adulthood. OCD’s prevalence in the general population ranges between 1% to 3%. It is the most common neuropsychiatric illness in the US affecting 6.5 million Americans. It affects one in 40 adults and 1 in 200 children and it is the tenth leading cause of disability worldwide. It has been calculated that the economic impact of OCD is $2.1 billion in direct medical costs and $5.9 billion in lost productivity. There is a high prevalence of co-morbidity with depression and anxiety. Suicide in OCD patients is more prevalent than in the general population.

The current therapeutic approaches include cognitive behavioral therapy, pharmacotherapy and surgical intervention utilizing Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS). Other approaches such as Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) are currently being studied. The Department of Psychiatry has a team of doctors with expertise in delivering a full range of treatment options for OCD. In addition we are the only academic center in New Jersey offering TMS therapy.


The New Jersey Center of Excellence for OCD is an academic-based organization focusing on the advancement of knowledge, prevention and treatment.  This is a multidisciplinary program run by the New Jersey Medical School Department of Psychiatry, in connection with the departments of neurological surgery, neurology and pediatric.

The main goals of the Center are:

  • To provide comprehensive assessments for individuals suffering from OCD or related disorders, specializing in treatment–resistant and severe OCD, and provide state of the art treatment.
  • To educate health care providers, students and our community on the symptoms of OCD and related syndromes.
  • To engage in research which will provide the scientific and medical communities the ability to advance the diagnosis and treatment options for OCD.

For more information or to schedule an appointment for a consultation, please call 973-972-2977