Day-hospital enhanced cognitive behavior therapy for adults with eating disorders: Immediate and follow-up effects

Int J Eat Disord. 2022 Jan;55(1):125-130. doi: 10.1002/eat.23632. Epub 2021 Oct 23.


Objective: To assess outcomes in adult patients with eating disorders administered enhanced cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT-E) in a day-hospital setting.

Method: Forty-three consecutive patients with eating disorders (86% females; mean age 28.8 [SD = 11.8]) were admitted to a 13-week day-hospital CBT-E program. Twenty-five (58.1%) patients were underweight (i.e., body mass index [BMI] <18.5 kg/m2 ; BMI 15.4 [SD = 2.2]) and 18 not (mean BMI 23.1 [SD = 6.3]) at baseline. All patients responded poorly to prior outpatient treatment. Body mass index and Eating Disorder Examination Questionnaire (EDE-Q), Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI), and Clinical Impairment Assessment (CIA) scores were recorded at baseline, end of treatment, and 20-week follow-up.

Results: In 37 patients (86.0%) who completed the treatment, there were substantial improvements in eating-disorder features, general psychopathology, clinical impairment, and body weight (only in underweight patients), which were well maintained at follow-up.

Discussion: Day-hospital CBT-E is a promising treatment for adults with eating disorders.

Keywords: Anorexia nervosa; Bulimia nervosa; body weight; cognitive behavior therapy; day hospital; drop-out; eating disorders; outcome; psychopathology; treatment.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anorexia Nervosa* / psychology
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Hospitals
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Treatment Outcome