Outline and Evaluate 2 Biological Explanations of OCD

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Outline and Evaluate 2 Biological Explanations of OCD

        The biological approach suggests that all mental illness is due to physical processes. For example, the genetic explanation of OCD suggests that the illness is inherited from parents. Therefore one of your parents have the OCD gene which they could pass on to their children. It is thoughts that the gene could then cause abnormalities in Neuroanatomical and neurochemical areas of the brain which then causes the symptoms of OCD, obsessions and compulsions to develop in this person.

        One strength of this explanation for OCD is that there is supporting research evidence.  Firstly, Nestadt (2000) identified 80 patients with OCD and 343 of their first degree relatives, and compared them with 73 control patients who did not have mental illness and 300 of their relatives. The results showed a strong familial link with the most common form of OCD. Subsequently he found that those who had a first degree relative with OCD were 5 times more likely to have the illness themselves compared to the general population. This is supported by Carey and Gottesman (1981) who found an 87% concordance rate in identical twins for OCD, whereas schizophrenia had only a 46% concordance rate. Therefore this research suggests that there is a strong link between family history and OCD showing that is you have a relative with OCD you are more likely to develop the illness yourself.

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        However one weakness of this is that the results found by Carey and Gottesman (1981) found only a 87% concordance rate and therefore this suggests that genes is not the only factor that is causing OCD otherwise it would be 100%. This means that environmental factors must play a role as well. In addition to this, it seems to be the occurrence of OCD that is hereditary not the specific symptoms again suggesting an environmental contribution.  Therefore, this weakens the explanation of genes as a cause of OCD as it shows that genes is not solely responsible and there must ...

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The writer has written a very concise and succinct essay which explains well biological explanations for OCD. There has also been evidence given to support or critique both the role genetics play as well as the neuro-anatomical argument. The writer has also consistently referenced the work. The essay could be improved by giving a good explanation of OCD and its symptoms as well as the biological perspective at the beginning. However, it is clear that the writer understands what has been written and has referenced sources.