Long Term Remission of Anorexia Nervosa: Factors Involved in the Outcome of Female Patients

Espíndola, Cybele R.; Blay, Sergio L.
February 2013
PLoS ONE;Feb2013, Vol. 8 Issue 2, p1
Academic Journal
Background: Anorexia nervosa (AN) is usually marked by difficult recovery. Objective: To elicit, describe and characterize factors involved in successful AN remission for at least five years and post-recovery life. Methods: A qualitative study design using semi-structured interviews according to grounded theory methodology was used. An intentional sample of 15 information rich AN patients was selected using two sampling procedures: the criterion and “snowball” techniques. Qualitative interviews were audiotaped, transcribed, and entered into a content analysis. Researchers coded transcripts and developed themes. Results: Four core parameters were found to be associated with remission: (i) ‘motivation to change/stimuli’; (ii) ‘empowerment/autonomy’; (iii) ‘media related factors’; (iv) ‘treatment factors’. Clinical remission can be associated with residual symptoms. Conclusions: The recovery model involves not only one, but rather a set of inter-active variables, each one can partially explain remission. Media factors can take a new role on recovery. Remission, however, can be followed by remnants of the disease and functional limitations.


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