© 2015 Elsevier B.V. Abstract Background Familiality, stressful life events (SLE) and gender significantly affect the onset of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). However, their combined impact on the probability of OCD chronicity is largely unknown. With the objective of clarifying their predictive value, we tested a model of interaction effects between these influences. Methods A sample of 449 patients with OCD was systematically assessed for familial loading, exposure to stressful life events, gender and course of the disease at the OCD referral unit at Bellvitge University Hospital. Multiple ordinal logistic regression was used to test interaction models. Results Familiality presented a main negative association with chronicity (OR=0.83, CI97.5%=0.70-0.98). This association was additively moderated by both exposure to SLE before onset and gender, and showed a positive slope among female patients not exposed to SLE before onset (Familiality∗SLEbo: OR=0.69, CI97.5%=0.47-1; Familiality∗gender: OR=1.30, CI97.5%=0.91-1.84). Limitations The findings are based on cross-sectional data. Assessment of course is based on a retrospective measure, which may imply the possibility of overestimation of chronicity. Conclusions The predictive value of familiality on the course of OCD is only partially informative as both SLEbo and gender modify the association. When other risk factors are included in the model, familiality may predict decreased chances of chronicity. The mediation effects identified could explain the discrepancies found in previous research on this topic. Increased chances of presenting a chronic course of OCD may be found in association with familial vulnerability among female patients not exposed to SLEbo.
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder
- Risk factors