The relationship between psychopathology, eating disorder diagnosis, and clinical outcome at 10-year follow-up in anorexia nervosa

Edward J. Schork, Elke D Eckert, Katherine A. Halmi

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44 Scopus citations


General psychopathology as measured by the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI), eating disorder diagnostic status (DSM-III-R), and clinical outcome were compared in a sample of 59 women 10 years after their hospital treatment for anorexia nervosa. There was a substantial and orderly relationship between severity of eating disorder symptomatology and severity of comorbid general psychopathology at follow-up evaluation. Those who had no eating disorder at follow-up displayed essentially no general psychopathology on the MMPI. Persons still suffering from a severe eating disorder (anorexia or bulimia nervosa) showed clinically significant levels of comorbid general psychopathology, and had significantly higher mean scores than the no eating disorder diagnosis group on seven MMPI clinical scales. Little general psychopathology was displayed by persons receiving a NOS eating disorder diagnosis at follow-up. Their mean MMPI profile was intermediate between those for the no diagnosis and severe eating disorder groups, but closer to that for the no diagnosis group. Rank order correlations were significant between levels of eating disorder symptom severity and all relevant MMPI clinical scales. Severity of psychopathology on the MMPI was also related to ratings of global outcome assessed by two approaches to categorizing outcome in anorexia nervosa.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)113-123
Number of pages11
JournalComprehensive Psychiatry
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1994

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
From the Department of Psychiatry, Cornell Universin, Medical College, White Plains. NY,; and the Department of Pvchiatv, Universig of Minnesota Medical School, Minneapolis. MN. Supported by US National Institute of Mental Health Grants No. ROI-MH-38054 arld ROI-MH-26409 to K.A.H. and E.D.E. Edward J. Schork. Ph.D., is in pnvatep ractice in Ridgefield. CT and White Plains, NY Address correspondence ,for him to 151 Scarlet Oak Dr. Wilton. CT 06897. Address reprint requests to Katherine A. Halmi, M.D.. Department of Psychiatry, Cornell Univer.sityM edical College, New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center, Westchester Division, 21 Bloomingdale Rd, white Plains, NY 10605. Copyright Cl 1994 by W.B. Saunders Cornpan! 0010-440x19413502-0008$03.0010


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