Advanced Interventions Service
Specialist Services for OCD and depression

The Dundee Advanced Interventions Service is a specialist service providing: intensive treatment for obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD); specialist assessment and treatment for depression and OCD; and neurosurgical treatment for mental disorder.

Specialist mental health services
For the people of Scotland

We are a National Specialist Service, which means that we are one of over 80 national services in Scotland, receiving funding directly from the National Services Division (NSD) of NHS Scotland. Referral, assessment, and treatment are cost-free to NHS Boards in Scotland.

We have considerable experience in the fields of neuromodulation, and expert-led psychopharmacology, along with being the only multi-disciplinary neurosurgical service in the UK for psychiatric disorders.

Services available

We offer specialist treatment for OCD and depression. We also provide expert diagnostic assessments for related conditions, and can offer advice on treatment. Select an option to read more...

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

We offer a range of treatments for OCD, including:

  1. Specialist assessment of obsessive-compulsive and related disorders, including complex diagnostic assessment of OCD and autism spectrum disorders.
  2. Supporting local teams to deliver exposure-and-response prevention (ERP).
  3. Intensive (including inpatient) treatment for OCD.
  4. Psychiatric neurosurgery.
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Depression

We have longstanding expertise in assessing and treating mood disorders, including depression. We can provide:

  1. Confirmation of diagnosis.
  2. Advice on expert psychopharmacology.
  3. Advice on psychological treatment.
  4. Neurosurgical pathways for treatment-refractory depression.
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Mood disorders

We are able to assess complex and treatment-refractory bipolar disorder(s) and offer advice on treatment.

For individuals with chronic and treatment-refractory bipolar depression, we can provide guidance on the suitability of neurosurgical treatments.

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COVID-19 - important information

The coronavirus pandemic has affected all NHS services. However, we continue to function and although we cannot do all the things we did before, we are committed to providing as full a service as possible to patients and referring clinicians.

A slightly more detailed description on how we have had to adapt services can be found on our COVID-19 page. Otherwise, please click on the relevant tab to find out more...

We have never closed to referrals and these will be reviewed, as usual, in our weekly team meetings. If you have any questions about a referral, or would like to discuss something, please get in touch.

Although we are not currently assessing people face-to-face, we are able to conduct the assessment via videoconference (Zoom, Skype, etc.). This means that people can be assessed in the comfort of their own homes and do not have to travel. We are flexibly adapting our assessment process which means that it can take place over multiple days and people should not expect a full-day assessment (as previously). We are confident that this allows a comprehensive review of the patient's condition so that treatment recommendations can be made.

We cannot provide therapist-guided exposure-and-response prevention at the current time due to the pandemic and we are not able to admit people to hospital for such treatment. For those individuals who would be receiving such treatment, we are shifting to delivery of treatment via videoconference. The team has experience in a range of treatments that can effectively be delivered online. When things return to something more closely resembling 'normal', if someone still needs intensive/ inpatient treatment, this will be offered.

It remains possible for people to travel to London for surgery. We are in close contact with neurosurgical colleagues in London who perform the surgery so that we can make sure that arrangements suit each person, whilst keeping risks as low as possible. At the current time, it is highly likely that people will be asked to self-isolate *before* travelling to London and they may need to self-isolate in London (depending on circumstances).

For people who would normally be reviewed in Dundee because they have previously had neurosurgical treatment or received intensive treatment, we will be getting in touch to discuss options for conducting the clinical part of the review via videoconference. We are minimising non-essential travel and hospital contact so we are postponing the neuropsychological assessment and/or MRI scans until it is safer to do these. However, we hope that the clinical reviews will allow us to discuss relevant treatment options with the individuals and their local teams.

Other resources

Please browse our resources for information on how to treat OCD and depression. We also publish our annual reports covering activity and outcomes.

Want to make a referral?

Need to know more?

If you would like further information on referral, or are a clinician who wishes to make a referral, please click on the button to view our referral FAQ.

Latest blog entries

We try to provide updated information on treatment, and comment on issues that relate to OCD and depression.

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Novel treatments for depression: psilocybin

In this blog I discuss a recent publication (Davis et al, 2020) which looked at a novel treatment for depression: Psilocybin. I review the study, look at the outcomes, and consider what the implications might be for treatment.

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How long does someone with OCD have symptoms before getting help?

It is fairly well known that people with OCD have symptoms for a long time before seeking help, and wait longer before receiving effective treatment. In light of a new study from Brazil about the speed of development of OCD symptoms (Thompson et al,...

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The effects of COVID-19 pandemic on OCD symptoms

In this blog, we look at a recent paper (Nissen et al, 2020) exploring the effects of COVID-19 on OCD symptoms in two groups of young people: one was a clinical group; the other was a group identified via the Danish OCD Association.

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Evidence review: N-acetylcysteine for OCD

In this blog, I review six randomised, controlled trials comparing N-Acetylcysteine (NAC) versus placebo for the treatment of OCD. NAC is a glutamate regulator and has good tolerability. Four trials tested it in adults, and two tested it in children.

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Delivering treatment for OCD during a pandemic: what have we learned in the AIS?

The pandemic has had a dramatic effect on the whole of the NHS, but it has also affected the availability of services for OCD. Not only that, but the nature of the pandemic will have had effects on many people with OCD; particularly those with...

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OCD severity in people seen by the AIS

People sometimes wonder how severe patients being seen by a specialist service are. The following is a description of the severity of symptoms that individuals seen by the AIS present with, based on a relatively large sample of patients seen over...

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