A case series evaluation of guided self-help for bulimia nervosa using a cognitive manual

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Abstract

Objective

The current study examined the usefulness of a new, cognitive-based self-help manual for bulimia nervosa.

Method

Twenty people were provided with assessment and six sessions of guided self-help using the manual. Participants were assessed for eating-related behaviors and attitudes and psychopathology at pretreatment, posttreatment, and at the 3-month follow-up. Assessment instruments included the Eating Disorder Examination, Symptom Checklist-90-Revised, Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale, Screening Test for Co-morbid Personality Disorders, and The University of Rhode Island Change Assessment. Data from 15 people were available at posttreatment and from 13 people at follow-up.

Results

Using intention-to-treat analyses, binge eating, vomiting, four of the five eating attitudes and self-esteem significantly improved between pretreatment and posttreatment. At follow-up, there was continued improvement on all measures, with the exception of binge eating.

Discussion

Guided self-help using cognitive techniques is a promising first-line treatment for bulimia nervosa, with further evaluation required in a randomized, controlled trial with long-term follow-up. © 2004 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Int J Eat Disord 36: 144–156, 2004.

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