In the last two decades there has been a growing interest in gender differences in obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and in the different aspects of the condition which researchers now suspect may have different causes. A study of 186 people with OCD in Barcelona looked not only at the links between gender and different aspects of OCD but also at the links between tic disorders and OCD and the effect of the age of onset of OCD on which symptoms were experienced. The study found that a preoccupation with contamination and cleaning was more common in women than men whereas a preoccupation with religious and sexual obsessions was more common in men than women. Symptoms of checking, symmetry/ordering and hoarding were equally common in both sexes. Patients who were obsessed with symmetry and ordering were more likely to have a history of tic disorders. Obsessions with symmetry/ordering and sexual and/or religious obsessions were both associated with an earlier onset of OCD.
Labad, Javier ... [et al] - Gender differences in obsessive-compulsive symptom dimensions Depression and Anxiety 2008, 25(10), 832-838