Conditions & Treatments

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is an anxiety disorder driven by recurrent, unwanted thoughts (obsessions) and/or repetitive behaviors (compulsions). 

Typically OCD begins in childhood and tends to run in families. When extreme cases of OCD become severe and time-consuming, they can significantly distress or disrupt a person’s life.

Our medical centers in Philadelphia and Montgomery County (Elkins Park) diagnose and provide personalized treatment for patients with obsessive compulsive disorder.


Our specialists may identify symptoms which include:

  • Dread of being contaminated by germs or diseases
  • Superstitions about certain numbers or patterns
  • Thoughts that something terrible might happen if a task is not done correctly
  • Fear of throwing something away that might be important
  • Imagining having harmed people
  • Fears of succumbing to unwanted violent or sexual urges
  • Excessive religious thoughts

The anxiety caused by these undesired obsessions can result in a patient seeking relief by conducting rituals (compulsions).

Common compulsions include:

  • Excessive washing or cleaning
  • Repeating certain phrases or prayers a specific number of times
  • Ritualistic checking behaviors
  • Reorganizing things until they are perfect
  • Hoarding
  • Repeatedly performing the same action 


Our therapists and specialists utilize the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders to diagnosis your symptoms as obsessive-compulsive disorder prior to working with you through personalized treatment options.


Although many people with OCD recognize their fears are irrational, they cannot overcome their obsessions and compulsions on their own. A typical treatment plan includes:

  • Medication--Therapies and rehabilitative services are very helpful for patients with OCD. At times antidepressant medications may be used as OCD treatment.
  • Support--We work to create a support system for patients during OCD treatment. We find that patients benefit greatly from family members who understand the disease and support them in the hospital and during aftercare.

Training & Education

At Einstein, we have clinical expertise in mental health and are actively invested in resident education.

We also offer graduate-level internships in mental health fields such as psychology and social work. Programs are available through area colleges and universities such as Bryn Mawr College, University of Pennsylvania, LaSalle University and Widener University. For additional information about internship opportunities, please contact:

Brian Gallagher, Psy.D.
Director, Outpatient Behavioral Health Services

Accreditation & Partnerships


Joint commission gold seal


  • Department of Health (DOH)
  • Department of Human Services (DHS)
  • Division of Drug and Alcohol Program Licensure (DDAPL)
  • Bureau of Drug and Alcohol (BDAP)

© 2023 Einstein Healthcare Network. All rights reserved.