Neuropsychological functioning in adolescents with anorexia nervosa before and after cognitive remediation therapy: A feasibility trial

Authors

  • Camilla Lindvall Dahlgren MA,

    Corresponding author
    1. Division of Mental Health and Addiction, Regional Department for Eating Disorders, Oslo University Hospital Ullevål HF, Norway
    • Correspondence to: Camilla Lindvall Dahlgren, Division of Mental Health and Addiction, Regional Department for Eating Disorders, Oslo University Hospital, Ullevål HF, Norway. E-mail: camilla.lindvall@dahlgren.no

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  • Bryan Lask MD,

    1. Division of Mental Health and Addiction, Regional Department for Eating Disorders, Oslo University Hospital Ullevål HF, Norway
    2. Feeding and Eating Disorders Service, Department of Child and Adolescent Mental Health, Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, NHS Trust, London, United Kingdom
    3. Care UK, London, United Kingdom
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  • Nils Inge Landrø PhD,

    1. Clinical Neuroscience Research Group, Department of Psychology, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway
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  • Øyvind Rø MD, PhD

    1. Division of Mental Health and Addiction, Regional Department for Eating Disorders, Oslo University Hospital Ullevål HF, Norway
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ABSTRACT

Objective

To investigate neuropsychological functioning in adolescents with anorexia nervosa (AN) before and after receiving cognitive remediation therapy (CRT).

Method

Twenty young females with AN participated in an individually-delivered CRT treatment program. Neuropsychological and psychiatric assessments were administered before and after treatment. Weight, depression, anxiety, duration of illness, and level of eating disorder psychopathology were considered as covariates in statistical analyses.

Results

Significant changes in weight, depression, visio-spatial memory, perceptual disembedding abilities, and verbal fluency were observed. Changes in weight had a significant effect on improvements in visuo-spatial memory and verbal fluency. Results also revealed a significant effect of depressive symptoms on perceptual disembedding abilities.

Discussion

The results suggest improvements on a number of neuropsychological functions during the course of CRT. Future studies should explore the use of additional assessment instruments, and include control groups to assess the effectiveness of the intervention. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. (Int J Eat Disord 2013; 46:576–581)

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