Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder

Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder Introduction

Philip K. McCullough, M.D.
John T. Maltsberger, M.D.

Individuals with obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (OCPD) have a pervasive pattern of rigidity and inflexibility and a preoccupation with control, orderliness, and perfectionism. The disorder is maladaptive and leads to difficulty in working and relating comfortably with others. OCPD is one of the Cluster C personality disorders in DSM-IV (American Psychiatric Association 1994). In the nomenclature of the International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision, it is referred to as anankastic personality and historically has been variously described as anal character, compulsive personality, obsessive-compulsive personality, and compulsive personality disorder.

In the literature, discussions of OCPD treatment have often been confused with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), which is currently viewed as a separate and distinct illness. The exact prevalence of OCPD is unclear. Based on Epidemiologic Catchment Area data, Nestadt et al. proposed a prevalence of 1.7% of the adult population; white, married, employed males are most likely to receive the diagnosis.

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Revision date: July 4, 2011
Last revised: by Amalia K. Gagarina, M.S., R.D.