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Eat Weight Disord. 2003 Sep;8(3):212-7.

Four-year follow-up of guided self-change for bulimia nervosa.

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Department of Social Studies, Bielefeld University of Applied Sciences, Bielefeld, Germany.


The aim of this follow-up study was to evaluate the longer-term effectiveness of guided self-care for bulimia nervosa. In the original trial, 62 patients with DSM-III-R bulimia nervosa were randomly assigned to: a) a self-care manual plus eight fortnightly sessions of cognitive behavioural therapy (guided self-change); or b) 16 weekly sessions of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). Twenty-eight of these patients (45% of the original cohort) were involved in this follow-up study based on personal interviews by experts and self-rated instruments; the majority of the others could not be traced, but their pre- and post-treatment variables were not different from those of the follow-up patients. After an average follow-up of 54.2 months (SD 5.8), significant improvements were achieved or maintained in both groups in terms of the main outcome measures: eating disorder symptoms based on expert ratings (Eating Disorder Examination sub-scores for overeating, vomiting, dietary restraint, and shape and weight concerns), self report (Bulimic Investigatory Test Edinburgh), and a global five-point severity scale. There was also an improvement in the subsidiary outcome variables: Beck's Depression Inventory, the Self-concept Questionnaire, and knowledge of nutrition, weight and shape. During the week before the follow-up examination, 66.7% of the patients in the guided self-change group and 61.5% of those in the CBT group had not binged, vomited or abused laxatives. Guided self-change incorporating a self-care manual is an approach that can be as effective as standard cognitive behavioural therapy in the long-term, and can reduce the amount of therapist contact required.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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