Aims and objectives. The major aims of this study were to explore the differences in anxiety, depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation between high and low obsessive compulsive symptom groups, as well as predictors for suicidal ideation among outpatients with obsessive compulsive disorder.
Background. Obsessive compulsive disorder is often accompanied by anxiety, depression and even suicidal ideation. However, there have been very few studies exploring the inter-relationships among anxiety, depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation for patients with obsessive compulsive disorder.
Design. This study employed a cross-sectional comparative research design.
Methods. A sample of 128 outpatients with obsessive compulsive disorder was recruited from a medical teaching hospital in Northern Taiwan. The major study instruments included the Beck Anxiety Inventory, Beck Depression Inventory II, Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale (Y-BOCS) and the Beck Scale for Suicide Ideation. We divided outpatients into two groups: outpatients with Y-BOCS scores higher than 15 were placed in the high obsessive compulsive symptom group, while outpatients with Y-BOCS score lower than or equal to 15 were placed in the low obsessive compulsive symptom group. Statistical methods included Pearson’s product–moment correlation, independent samples t-test, chi-square test and multiple regressions.
Results. Results revealed that obsessive compulsive disorder outpatients with high Y-BOCS scores also had higher rates of being single and having an earlier onset age, poorer disease control, higher levels of anxiety, depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation. The predictors for suicidal ideation were anxiety and depressive symptoms.
Conclusions. Obsessive compulsive disorder patients with higher obsessive compulsive symptoms are at greater risk of higher levels of anxiety, depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation. In addition to depression, anxiety symptoms contribute significantly to suicidal ideation among patients with obsessive compulsive disorder.
Relevance to clinical practice. Standard nursing care of patients with obsessive compulsive disorder should incorporate assessing levels of obsessive compulsive symptoms to identify the severity of anxiety, depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation more accurately.