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David Okai

Dr David Okai MRCPsych MD(Res) MRCPsych MB.BS B.Med.Sci(Hons) PGDip(CBT)

Visiting Lecturer

Contact details


Dr David Okai MRCPsych MD(Res) MRCPsych MB.BS B.Med.Sci(Hons) PGDip(CBT) is a Consultant Neuropsychiatrist at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, Clinical Lead for the Department. He is also a Visiting Senior Lecturer at the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology, and Neurosciences; and Honorary Senior Clinical Lecturer in Neurosciences in Oxford. He trained in psychiatry at the Bethlem and Maudsley Hospital, and also spent some time at Queen Square Institute of Neurology.

During his training he undertook a diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), and completed his doctorate (MDRes) in research psychology - based on the assessment and psychosocial management of Parkinson’s patients with complex neuropsychiatric conditions.

He currently serves on the board of directors for the British Neuropsychiatric Association (BNPA), and is a co-opted member of the Royal College of Psychiatrists Faculty of Neuropsychiatry. He has been a founding member of the Faculty of Neuropsychiatry Movement Disorders Working Group; advisor to the All-Party Parliamentary Group on the Management of the Neuropsychiatry of Parkinson’s; worked on the Clinical Advisory Panel of Parkinson’s UK; and was a member of the Movement Disorders Task Force on Rating Scales in ICBs.

He teaches nationally and internationally on many different areas of neuropsychiatry, and has published book chapters on neuropsychiatry/psychology, and general psychiatry. He has additional interests in factors such as the real-world validity of psychological tests of dysexecutive syndrome. He is involved with ongoing work on a large prospective studies of PD progression and how this impacts on personality and behaviour in Oxford; NIHR funded projects on the neuropsychiatry of the autoimmune encephalopathies, and a further trial in Depression in Traumatic Brain injury.

Research Interests

  • Assessment and Management of Complex neuropsychiatric conditions including Parkinson’s disease, Autoimmune Encephalitides, and Traumatic Brain injury.
  • Treatment trials.

Research Groups

Neuropsychiatry Research & Education Group (NREG)

BRC/Wellcome group: Encephalitides, Oxford.

NIHR: TBI research Group

Expertise and Public Engagement

  • European Psychiatric Association. Regular course ‘ABCs of Neuropsychiatry’
  • Neurology academy: Parkinson’s Masterclass. Neuropsychiatry (Mood disorders; Psychosis; and related neuropsychiatric conditions).
  • Blog: Neurology Podcasts. Impulse Control Disorders
  • Royal College of Psychiatry, Faculty of Neuropsychiatry: Co-opted Member of Executive Board (2020 – present)
  • British Neuropsychiatric Association: Member of Board of Directors (2018 – present)
  • Faculty of Old Age and Faculty of Neuropsychiatry Joint Report on services for Parkinson’s mental health (2017): Lead on Royal College of Psychiatry joint report. Alongside oral evidence at All Party Parliamentary Group Meeting at Westminster.
  • Movement Disorders Society Rating Scales Task Force (2011-2019): Evaluation of severity scales for Impulse Control Disorders in Parkinson’s disease, Movement Disorders Society - an international role involving experts from across the world (completed/published).

Key Publications

Deli A., Huang Y., Toynbee M., Towle S., Adcock J., Bajorek T., Okai D., Sen A. (2021) Distinguishing psychogenic nonepileptic, mixed, and epileptic seizures using systemic measures and reported experiences, Epilepsy & Behavior, 116, 1-5.

Price, J., & Okai, D. (2020). Functional disorders and ‘medically unexplained physical symptoms’. Medicine, 48(12), 761-764.

Okai, D. Neuropsychiatric sequelae of Parkinson's disease: what every clinician needs to know. BJPsych Advances 26(6), 343-345

Okai, D., & Telesia, L. (2020). Clinical assessment in old age psychiatry. Medicine. 48(11); 697-700

Drew, D.S., Muhammed, K., Baig, F., Kelly, M., Saleh, Y., Sarangmat, N., Okai, D., Hu, M., Manohar, S. and Husain, M. (2020). Dopamine and reward hypersensitivity in Parkinson’s disease with impulse control disorder. Brain, 143(8), p.2502.

Kelly, M. J., Baig, F., Hu, M., & Okai, D. (2020). Spectrum of impulse control behaviours in Parkinson's disease: pathophysiology and management. Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry. 91:703–711.

Baig, F., Kelly, M., Lawton, M., Ruffmann, C., Rolinski, M., Klein, JC., Barber, T., Lo C., Ben-Shlomo, Y., Okai, D., Hu, M. (2019) Impulse control disorders in Parkinson’s and RBD – a longitudinal study of severity. Neurology 93(7); e675-e687.

Al-Diwani, A., Handel, A., Townsend, L., Pollak, T., Leite, M.I., Harrison, P.J., Lennox, B.R., Okai, D., Manohar, S.G. and Irani, S.R. (2019). The psychopathology of NMDAR-antibody encephalitis in adults: a systematic review and phenotypic analysis of individual patient data. The Lancet Psychiatry. 6(3); 235-246

Evans, A., Okai, D., Weintraub, D, Voon., V., Krack, P., Lim, S., Sampaio, C., Rascol, O., Stebbins, G., Schrag, A., Goetz, C. (2019) Scales to assess impulsive and compulsive behaviours in Parkinson's disease: critique and recommendations. Movement disorders, 34(6), 791-798.

Baig, F., Lawton, M. A., Rolinski, M., Ruffmann, C., Klein, J. C., Nithi, K., Okai, D., & Hu, M. T. (2017). Personality and addictive behaviours in early Parkinson's disease and REM sleep behaviour disorder. Parkinsonism & Related Disorders. 37; 72-78.

Koychev, I., & Okai, D. (2017). Cognitive-behavioural therapy for non-motor symptoms of Parkinson's disease: a clinical review. Evidence-based mental health. 20(1);15-20.

Iyasere, O., Okai, D., & Brown, E. (2017). Cognitive function and advanced kidney disease: longitudinal trends and impact on decision-making. Clinical Kidney Journal. 10(1); 89-94.

Okai, D., Askey‐Jones, S., Mack, J., Martin, A., Chaudhuri, K. R., Samuel, M., ... & Brown, R. G. (2016). Parkinson's Impulse Control Scale for the Severity Rating of Impulse Control Behaviors in Parkinson's Disease: A Semistructured Clinical Assessment Tool. Movement disorders clinical practice. 3(5); 494-499.

Okai, D., Askey-Jones, S., Samuel, M., Brown, R., David, A. (2015) Predictors of Response to a Cognitive Behavioural Intervention for Impulse Control Behaviours in Parkinson’s disease. Movement Disorders. 30(5); 736-739.

Todorova,A., Martin, A., Okai, D., Samuel, M., Brown, R., David, A., Chaudhuri, C. (2013). Subcutaneous apomorphine and non-motor symptoms in Parkinson's disease. Movement Disorders. 28 (Suppl. 1); S133-134.

Okai, D., Askey-Jones, S., Samuel, M., O’Sullivan, S., Chaudhuri, R., Martin, A., Mack, J., Brown, R., David, A. (2013) An RCT of a Cognitive Behavioural Intervention for Impulse Control Behaviours in PD patients. Neurology. 80(9); 792-799.

Mack, J., Okai, D., Brown, R., Askey-Jones, S., Chaudhuri, R., Martin, A., Samuel, M., David, A. (2013) The Role of Self-Awareness and Cognitive Dysfunction in Parkinson’s disease with and without Impulse-Control Disorder. The Journal of Neuropsychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences. 25(2); 141-149.

Okai, D., Samuel, M., Jones S., Brown, R., David, A. (2011) Impulse Control Disorders in Parkinson’s disease: A Broader Conceptual Framework. European Journal of Neurology 18(12); 1379-1383.

Okai, D., Owen, G., McGuire, H., Singh, S., Churchill, R. Hotopf, M. (2007) Mental Capacity in Psychiatric Patients: A Systematic Review. British Journal of Psychiatry 191(4); 291-297.

Hotopf, M., Okai, D., Owen, G., Singh, S, Churchill, R. (2007). Mental Capacity: a systematic review of empirical research. Department of Health, UK.

Owen, G., Okai, D., Hotopf, M (2007) Mental Capacity. Psychiatry. 6(2); 69-72.


Book Chapters

Okai D., David A. (2012) Cognitive Neuropsychiatry. Chapter in: Cognitive Psychology (Eds: Braisby N and Gellatly N) Oxford University Press (Oxford). Pages 468-502.

Okai D. (2016) General Adult Psychiatry. Chapter in: MRCPsych: Passing the CASC Exam (Eds: Sauer J) Hodder Arnold (London). Pages 1-22.