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Empirically-supported and non-empirically supported therapies for bulimia nervosa: retrospective patient ratings

Serpell, LE; Stobie, B; Fairburn, CG; van Schaick, R; (2013) Empirically-supported and non-empirically supported therapies for bulimia nervosa: retrospective patient ratings. Journal of Eating Disorders , 1 , Article 41. 10.1186/2050-2974-1-41. Green open access

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Abstract

Background: Empirically supported therapies for bulimia nervosa include cognitive behaviour therapy and interpersonal therapy. Whilst these treatments have been shown to be effective in multiple randomised controlled trials, little research has investigated how they are perceived by patients who receive them. This study investigated whether empirically-supported psychological therapies (ESTs) are associated with superior self-rated treatment outcomes in clients with Bulimia Nervosa (BN). Method: 98 adults who had received psychological therapy for BN in the United Kingdom completed a questionnaire which retrospectively assessed the specific contents of their psychological therapy and self-rated treatment outcomes. Results: Around half the sample, fifty three participants reported receiving an EST. Fifty of these received Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) and three Interpersonal Therapy (IPT). Where therapy met expert criteria for Cognitive Behaviour Therapy for Bulimia Nervosa (CBT-BN, an EST) participants reported superior treatment outcomes than those who appeared to receive non-specialist cognitive-behavioural therapy. However, self-rated treatment outcomes were similar overall between those whose therapy met criteria for ESTs and those whose therapy did not. Discussion: The findings offer tentative support for the perceived helpfulness of CBT-BN as evaluated in controlled research trials. Cognitive-behavioural therapies for BN, as they are delivered in the UK, may not necessarily be perceived as more beneficial by clients with BN than psychological therapies which currently have less empirical support.

Type: Article
Title: Empirically-supported and non-empirically supported therapies for bulimia nervosa: retrospective patient ratings
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1186/2050-2974-1-41
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/2050-2974-1-41
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2013 Serpell et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: Bulimia nervosa, treatment, cognitive behaviour therapy, empirically supported therapies
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Clinical, Edu and Hlth Psychology
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1413443
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