Electrical brain stimulation may be a therapeutic alternative for irreversible lesions in treatment-resistant patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). We compared the effects of electrical stimulation and lesion in the nucleus accumbens (n acc) on the behaviour of rats in a model for OCD. Rats were tested for spontaneous alternation behaviour (AB) in a T-maze and assigned to four groups: an electrode implant group with stimulation 'ON' (stimON) or 'OFF' (stimOFF), a lesion or a sham group. Postoperatively, the number of arm visits and AB were tested after 8-hydroxy-2-(di-n-propylamino)-tetralin hydrobromide (8-OH-DPAT; 2 mg/kg) or saline administration. After 8-OH-DPAT administration, more arm visits were counted in the stimON (92.2%) and lesion groups (79.3%) than in both control groups (stimOFF 54.2; sham 61.2%). AB was significantly decreased in the stimON (10.5%) and lesion groups (10.2%) relative to the sham (22.0%) but not to the stimOFF group (14.7%). After saline administration, rats performed more arm visits in the stimON (81.5% non-significant) and lesion groups (93.6% significant) relative to the stimOFF (70.8%) and the sham groups (74.5%). No significant differences, however, were observed for AB. In conclusion, both treatments resulted in a decreased AB after 8-OH-DPAT administration (modelling an increase in compulsions) and more arm visits.