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Decision-making and planning in full recovery of anorexia nervosa




Based on findings of persisting neuropsychological impairments in women recovered from anorexia nervosa (rec AN), this study examined decision-making and planning, for achieving a desired goal, as central executive functions in a large sample of rec AN. The definition of recovery included physiological, behavioral, and psychological variables.


A total of 100 rec AN women were compared to 100 healthy women, 1:1 matched for age and educational level. Decision-making was assessed with the Iowa Gambling Task and planning with the Tower of London. Expert interviews and self-ratings were used for assessing the inclusion/exclusion criteria and control variables.


Compared to healthy controls, rec AN women were better in decision-making and worse in planning even after considering control variables.


This study does not support results from other studies showing that rec AN participants perform better in decision-making. Results from this study show that planning is impaired even after full recovery from AN. © 2012 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. (Int J Eat Disord 2011;45:866–875)