Predictors of premature termination from psychotherapy for anorexia nervosa: Low treatment credibility, early therapy alliance, and self-transcendence

About this resource

Objective: Failure to complete treatment for anorexia nervosa (AN) is- common, clinically concerning but difficult to predict. This study examines whether therapy-related factors (patient-rated pretreatment credibility and early therapeutic alliance) predict subsequent premature termination of treatment (PTT) alongside self-transcendence (a previously identified clinical predictor) in women with AN. Methods: 56 women aged 17–40 years participating in a randomized outpatient psychotherapy trial for AN. Treatment completion was defined as attending 15/20 planned sessions. Measures were the Treatment Credibility, Temperament and Character Inventory, Vanderbilt Therapeutic Alliance Scale and the Vanderbilt Psychotherapy Process Scale. Statistics were univariate tests, correlations, and logistic regression. Results: Treatment credibility and certain early patient and therapist alliance/process subscales predicted PTT. Lower self-transcendence and lower early process accounted for 33% of the variance in predicting PTT. Discussion: Routine assessment of treatment credibility and early process (comprehensively assessed from multiple perspectives) may help clinicians reduce PTT thereby enhancing treatment outcomes.

AuthorJordan, Jennifer; McIntosh, Virginia V. W.; Carter, Frances A.; Joyce, Peter R.; Frampton, Christopher M. A.; Luty, Suzanne E.; McKenzie, Janice M.; Carter, Janet D. & Bulik, Cynthia M.
JournalInternational Journal of Eating Disorders

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