Exposure and Response Prevention for Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: A Case Study of a Veteran With Violent Intrusive Thoughts.

Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) is the gold standard treatment for obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD); however, few studies have evaluated the use of ERP with veterans. This case study describes ERP and medication treatment of a veteran who experienced violent sexual thoughts, countered by compulsions of focusing on the distressing thought to ensure a negative emotion or reversing the thought to a nonviolent thought or image. The veteran had previously received supportive psychotherapy and medication for depression, anxiety, and sleep difficulties, with poor treatment adherence. Upon reengagement in treatment, the therapist provided ERP in 34 sessions over 14 months, with 15 sessions via video telehealth to home. The patient used the OCD Workbook as a resource throughout treatment. The patient developed a hierarchy of target obsessions and rituals with associated subjective units of distress; completed exposures, beginning with lower-level items; and wrote imaginal scripts. He also received zolpidem for insomnia and venlafaxine for anxiety and depression. His scores on the nine-item Patient Health Questionnaire and Yale Brown Obsessive-Compulsive Scale decreased significantly.© Copyright 2019 Springer Publishing Company, LLC.