Get Alert
Please Wait... Processing your request... Please Wait.
You must sign in to sign-up for alerts.

Please confirm that your email address is correct, so you can successfully receive this alert.

Brief Reports   |    
Comparison of cognitive-behavioral and supportive-expressive therapy for bulimia nervosa
Am J Psychiatry 1993;150:37-46.
text A A A
PDF of the full text article.

OBJECTIVE: The authors compared the effectiveness of 4 months (18 sessions) of cognitive-behavioral and supportive-expressive therapy for bulimia. METHOD: Sixty patients obtained from clinical referrals to an eating disorders program who met modified DSM-III-R criteria for bulimia nervosa were randomly assigned to the two conditions. Treatments were delivered in an individual format, on an outpatient basis, by experienced therapists using treatment manuals. The primary outcome measures were self-induced vomiting, binge eating, and attitudes toward body weight and shape, which were assessed by self- report and structured interview. RESULTS: Fifty patients completed treatment, 25 in each condition. Both treatments led to significant improvements in specific eating disorder symptoms and in psychosocial disturbances. Supportive-expressive therapy was just as effective as cognitive-behavioral therapy in reducing binge eating. Where treatment differences were found, they favored cognitive-behavioral therapy. Cognitive-behavioral therapy was marginally superior in reducing the frequency of self-induced vomiting; 36% of the patients who received cognitive-behavioral therapy and 12% of those who received supportive- expressive therapy abstained from vomiting in the last month of treatment. Cognitive-behavioral therapy was significantly more effective in ameloriating disturbed attitudes toward eating and weight, depression, poor self-esteem, general psychological distress, and certain personality traits. CONCLUSIONS: These results moderately favor cognitive-behavioral therapy over supportive-expressive therapy for bulimia nervosa, but follow-up is required to determine the durability of outcome with both modalities. The findings must be interpreted with caution since the selected clinical sample in this study may not represent the bulimia nervosa population.

Abstract Teaser
Figures in this Article

Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.
Sign In Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.
Sign In to Access Full Content
Sign in via Athens (What is this?)
Athens is a service for single sign-on which enables access to all of an institution's subscriptions on- or off-site.
Not a subscriber?

Subscribe Now/Learn More

PsychiatryOnline subscription options offer access to the DSM-5 library, books, journals, CME, and patient resources. This all-in-one virtual library provides psychiatrists and mental health professionals with key resources for diagnosis, treatment, research, and professional development.

Need more help? PsychiatryOnline Customer Service may be reached by emailing PsychiatryOnline@psych.org or by calling 800-368-5777 (in the U.S.) or 703-907-7322 (outside the U.S.).




CME Activity

There is currently no quiz available for this resource. Please click here to go to the CME page to find another.
Submit a Comments
Please read the other comments before you post yours. Contributors must reveal any conflict of interest.
Comments are moderated and will appear on the site at the discertion of APA editorial staff.

* = Required Field
(if multiple authors, separate names by comma)
Example: John Doe

Web of Science® Times Cited: 137

Related Content
Gabbard's Treatments of Psychiatric Disorders, 4th Edition > Chapter 48.  >
Gabbard's Treatments of Psychiatric Disorders, 4th Edition > Chapter 48.  >
Dulcan's Textbook of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry > Chapter 26.  >
APA Practice Guidelines > Chapter 0.  >
Dulcan's Textbook of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry > Chapter 26.  >
Topic Collections
Psychiatric News
PubMed Articles