ISSN: 1935-1232 (P)

ISSN: 1941-2010 (E)



The Evaluation of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and Working Memory Impairment in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis: A Case Study in Iran
Author(s): Mohammad Hossein Salemi*, Elham Foroozandeh and Mohsen Reisi Dehkordi

Background and aim: One of the most important complications related to Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is mental disorders and memory errors. The main purpose of the study is to evaluate the situation of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Working Memory Impairment (WMI) as a case study in Iran.

Materials and methods: To conduct this study, 30 patients with MS (as the case group) and 30 healthy people (as the control group) were selected by available sampling method. The tool for collecting information related to WMI was Prospective/Retrospective Memory Questionnaire (PRMQ). To collect information related to OCD, a semi-structured interview was used, which was based on qualitative questions and focused on MS patients' experiences of having obsessive thoughts. Finally, the results were analyzed using SPSS-Ver.22 software and the application of multivariate Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) at the significance level (α=0.05).

Results: The results showed that the average memory errors in patients with MS in short-term and long-term prospective memory, as well as short-term and long-term retrospective memory were significantly higher than healthy subjects (P<0.05). In addition, the average memory errors in patients with MS in prospective memory based on peripheral cues, retrospective memory based on individual cues, and retrospective memory based on peripheral cues are significantly higher than healthy individuals. Whereas, prospective memory errors based on individual cues do not differ between patients with MS and healthy individuals (P>0.05). In addition, based on the analysis of OCD data, the experience of MS patients was placed in three themes, which are: childhood and family experiences that are the basis of obsessive-compulsive disorder, disturbing thoughts and emotions surrounding the disease and its treatment, and the experience of an ambiguous future and uncertain.

Conclusion: The results showed that MS patients experience complications such as mental pressure, mental conflicts and various memory disorders. Identifying memory disorders and also diagnosing obsessive-compulsive thoughts in these patients helps in the process of evaluation, diagnosis and psychological treatment of obsessive-compulsive disorder and their memory disorders, and finally, this can improve the quality of life in MS patients.