Send to

Choose Destination
Psychiatry Res. 2016 Dec 30;246:447-452. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2016.08.064. Epub 2016 Oct 4.

Take charge: Personality as predictor of recovery from eating disorder.

Author information

Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden. Electronic address:
Department of Psychology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Champaign, IL, USA.
Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden.


Many treatments for eating disorders (ED) have demonstrated success. However, not all patients respond the same to interventions nor achieve full recovery, and obvious candidates like ED diagnosis and symptoms have generally failed to explain this variability. The current study investigated the predictive utility of personality for outcome in ED treatment. One hundred and thirty adult patients with bulimia nervosa or eating disorder not otherwise specified enrolled in an intensive multimodal treatment for 16 weeks. Personality was assessed with the NEO Personality Inventory Revised (NEO PI-R). Outcome was defined as recovered versus still ill and also as symptom score at termination with the Eating Disorder Inventory-2 (EDI-2). Personality significantly predicted both recovery (70% of patients) and symptom improvement. Patients who recovered reported significantly higher levels of Extraversion at baseline than the still ill, and Assertiveness emerged as the personality trait best predicting variance in outcome. This study indicates that personality might hold promise as predictor of recovery after treatment for ED. Future research might investigate if adding interventions to address personality features improves outcome for ED patients.


Five-factor model; Group therapy; Outcome; Prediction; Psychotherapy

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center