Bachelor of Arts, Smith College (2004)
Doctor of Psychology, Palo Alto University (2012)
Sharon Williams, Postdoctoral Faculty Sponsor
The aim of this study was to examine the relationship between therapeutic alliance and treatment outcome (remission status) in family-based treatment (FBT) and adolescent-focused therapy (AFT) for adolescents with anorexia nervosa (AN).Independent observers rated audiotapes of early therapy sessions using the Working Alliance Inventory-Observer Version (WAI-o). Outcome was defined using established cut-points for full and partial remission. To control for effects of early symptom improvement, changes in weight- and eating-related psychopathology prior to the alliance session were calculated and entered as a covariate in each analysis.Participants in AFT had significantly higher alliance scores; however, overall scores were high in both therapies. The alliance was not a predictor of full remission for either treatment, though it was a non-specific predictor for partial remission.Therapeutic alliance is achievable in adolescents with AN in both AFT and FBT, but demonstrated no relationship to full remission of the disorder.
View details for DOI 10.1002/eat.22047
View details for Web of Science ID 000312300000005
View details for PubMedID 22836506
The purpose of this study was to explore how individuals with anorexia nervosa (AN) engage in treatment and define recovery. A mixed methods design was used to triangulate the experience of 20 women with a history of AN. Interview data were analysed thematically to explore frequency of emergent themes and current eating disorder psychopathology was assessed using standardized self-report measures. Participants' mean age was 29.35 (SD = 12.11). Participants' scores were indicative of persistent psychopathology. Those with more involvement in treatment choice had better motivation to change and normalized eating. Participants' definition of recovery mapped on well to current research conceptualizations, though a substantial proportion of the group expressed some ambivalence around the concept. Results are interpreted in the context of self-determination theory of motivation and suggest that patients should be involved collaboratively in the formulation of shared goals and concepts of recovery in treatment settings.
View details for DOI 10.1002/erv.1020
View details for Web of Science ID 000280080100003
View details for PubMedID 20589765
The current study aimed to screen for indications of psychopathology displayed by the parents of adolescents diagnosed with Anorexia Nervosa (AN), and examine the relationship between severity of adolescent eating disorder symptoms and parental psychopathology. Sixty female adolescents diagnosed with DSM-IV-TR AN (restricting-type and binge-purge-type) were administered the Eating Disorder Examination (EDE) and parents completed the Symptom Checklist 90-Revised (SCL-90-R). As compared to established non-patient norms, both fathers and mothers of adolescents with AN reported greater levels of obsessive compulsive behaviors, hostility, depression, and anxiety as measured by the SCL-90-R. In addition, duration of AN was positively associated with hostility scores in fathers, and global EDE scores were associated with hostility in mothers. While parental scores on the SCL-90 were elevated as compared to community samples, results of this study do not support a direct influence of parental psychopathology on symptom severity of adolescent AN. Increasing rates of hostility scores in parents with increased duration of AN may represent either a response to the presence of the disorder or be a maintaining factor for AN.
View details for DOI 10.1080/10640260802570122
View details for PubMedID 19105061
Our goal was to evaluate the addition of parent and clinician reports to the eating disorder examination (EDE) when used with children and adolescents.The EDE was completed with 117 children and adolescents with eating disorders (mean age 14.95 +/- 1.91 years). A slightly modified version of the EDE was completed with parents, and clinician summary scores were assigned. Repeated measures analysis was used to compare child, parent, and clinician scores.In those 70 participants with anorexia nervosa (AN) or eating disorder not otherwise specified with a restrictive pattern (EDNOS-R), child scores were significantly lower than parent scores and clinician scores on restraint and weight concerns. On eating concerns and shape concerns, child scores were lower than clinician scores. Participants with bulimia nervosa (BN) or eating disorder not otherwise specified with binge eating or purging (EDNOS-BP), reported more restraint and shape concerns than parents (n = 47), but their scores did not differ from clinician ratings. No differences were seen in this group on weight concerns or eating concerns.Parent and clinician reports are particularly important when assessing children and adolescents with AN or EDNOS-R, but may be less critical for those with BN or EDNOS-BP.
View details for DOI 10.1002/eat.20379
View details for Web of Science ID 000247356400012
View details for PubMedID 17726771
Perfectionism is a potentially maladaptive personality trait implicated in a number of psychopathologies. As our understanding of the construct perfectionism has shifted from more unidimensionally focused conceptualizations to multidimensional ones, our ability to assess its bearing on various disorders has grown. One particular area in which perfectionism appears to play an important role is among eating disorder patients. The personalities of both those with anorexia nervosa (AN) and bulimia nervosa (BN) are thought to be intrinsically perfectionistic, which suggests a need to understand the role perfectionism plays in the development, course and outcome of these disorders. There is also an increased focus on perfectionism among athletes and its relationship to the higher prevalence of eating disorders in this group. With the institution of Title IX in the United States (which prohibited sex discrimination in higher educational settings) the participation of women in various sports has increased exponentially and with it concerns about their well-being in a milieu where a risk for menstrual irregularities, osteoporosis and eating disorders (the female athlete triad) are common. However, conflicting data suggests that athletics may be a protective factor in the development of eating disorders on the one hand, or it may be a risk factor on the other. Thus, it has become important to examine other variables, such as perfectionism, that may influence the outcome, one way or another. This review examines the current evidence about the relations between perfectionism, athletics and eating disorders.
View details for PubMedID 17093375
Research suggests that family-based treatment (FBT) is an effective treatment for adolescents with anorexia nervosa (AN). This retrospective case series was designed to examine its usefulness with younger children.Data were abstracted from medical records of 32 children with a mean age of 11.9 years (range 9.0-12.9) meeting diagnostic criteria for AN (n=29) and eating disorder not otherwise specified-restricting type (n=3) who were treated at two sites with FBT. Baseline characteristics, before and after weights, and Eating Disorder Examination (EDE) scores were compared with an adolescent cohort (N=78) with a mean age of 15.5 years (range 13.1-18.4) who were treated with FBT.Children with AN share most disordered eating behaviors with their adolescent counterparts; however, their EDE scores are significantly lower than adolescents at both pre- and posttreatment assessments. Over the course of treatment with FBT, children showed statistically and clinically significant weight gain and improvements in eating disordered thinking as measured by the EDE.FBT appears to be an acceptable and effective treatment for AN in children.
View details for DOI 10.1097/01.chi.0000233208.43427.4c
View details for Web of Science ID 000241415600006
View details for PubMedID 17075354