Background. The comorbidity of bipolar disorder (BD) and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) has been widely described. Several studies have investigated the cognitive profiles of BD and OCD patients, but studies that compare BD, BD-OCD, and OCD patients in neuropsychological domains do not exist. The purpose of this study was to compare set-shifting, decision making, and central coherence among BD, BD-OCD, and OCD patients.MethodsA battery of neuropsychological tests was administered to 68 patients (22 BD, 26 BD-OCD, 20 OCD). The Young Mania Rating Scale and Hamilton Depression Rating Scale were used to evaluate manic and depressive symptoms, and OCD severity was assessed with the Yale Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale.ResultsNo significant differences emerged in decision-making and cognitive flexibility, whereas BD patients had lower scores in the Accuracy Index on Rey-Osterrieth Complex Figure Test and poor response speed on Hayling Sentence Completion Test Part A than OCD patients.LimitationsThe small sample size with different BD patients, the cross-sectional design, and the study clinical nature.ConclusionsThe most striking result is that, contrary to our hypothesis, comorbidity does not further impair the neurocognitive profile. The clinical relevance of our work could be a shift from the current cognitive rehabilitation model focusing on individualized pathways towards a new overlapping model for all three patient groups. This could make the cognitive rehabilitation faster and less costly. Notwithstanding, these disorders do not only need cognitive training but also various psycho-educative approaches and treatment according to their different clinical profile.
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