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Patterns and predictors of recovery in anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa.

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  • 1Harvard Medical School.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

The purpose of this study was to assess the course and outcome of anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa at 1 year in a large cohort of women with eating disorders.

METHOD:

A prospective, naturalistic, longitudinal design was used to map the course of 225 women with anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and mixed anorexia and bulimia nervosa. Structured interviews were conducted quarterly. Follow-up data are presented in terms of patterns of recovery, clinical features predictive of time to recovery, and the role of comorbid disorders as fixed predictors.

RESULTS:

The recovery rate of bulimics was significantly better than that of anorexic or mixed subjects, yet nearly half the anorexic and mixed subjects no longer met full DSM-III-R criteria for at least 8 consecutive weeks during the first year of follow-up. Percent ideal body weight and type of eating disorder were significantly associated with outcome.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our findings suggest that the diagnosis of anorexia nervosa has severe implications.

PMID:
8340307
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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