Salud Mental

Inferential confusion in the worldview of individuals with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD): a qualitative approach


Edward Jensen García
Guillermina Natera Rey


Introduction. The Inference-based Approach (IBA) is an etiologic, therapeutic research paradigm regarding inferential confusion (IC) as an exclusive metacognitive process of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). IC is the rational tendency of individuals with OCD to underrate abstract data and personal experiences and overrate hypothetical possibilities. IC therefore fosters uncertainty and facilitates the justification of obsessive constructs. IBA has noted that qualitative research on IC and the exploration of IC in non-OCD cognitive constructs are required to refine cognitive and therapeutic OCD models. This could help clarify whether OCD treatment by IBA is overlooking non-obsessive IC habits which, if left untreated, could compromise treatment success.

Objective. To identify the possible influence of IC on non-obsessive, cognitive worldview constructs of individuals with OCD and to compare these constructs with those of individuals without OCD.

Method. Twenty-five semi-structured, in-depth interviews were conducted, 15 with individuals with OCD and 10 with a comparison group without OCD or OCD symptoms. Data were collected and analyzed using Grounded Theory methodology.

Results. IC was identified in the non-obsessive cognitive worldview constructs of every participant with OCD. IC was not identified in the comparative group.

Discussion and conclusion. The results suggest that IC affects the rational composition of non-obsessive cognitive worldview constructs of individuals with OCD. The implications this could have for the cognitive and therapeutic models of OCD are discussed.

Obsessive-compulsive disorder, inferential confusion, cognitive construct, metacognition


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