Predictors of neuropsychological recovery in treatment for Anorexia Nervosa

Ekaterina Keifer, Kevin Duff, Leigh J. Beglinger, Erin Barstow, Arnold Andersen, David J. Moser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Previous research indicates that individuals with Anorexia Nervosa (AN) often experience some degree of neuropsychological dysfunction. Although most aspects of cognition improve with treatment, factors that predict neuropsychological improvement remain elusive. The present study investigated whether cognitive reserve, the estimated level of premorbid cognitive functioning, and AN subtype predicted neuropsychological improvement during inpatient treatment for AN. Neuropsychological functioning was assessed pre- and post-hospitalization in 28 women with AN (18 with restricting type and 10 with binge-eating/purging type), and cognitive reserve was estimated at admission using a word reading test. Level of cognitive reserve and AN subtype were both significant predictors of neuropsychological improvement in this sample. Cognitive reserve was significantly associated with improvements in verbal memory, semantic fluency, basic auditory attention and visuospatial construction. Participants with AN binge-eating/purging type demonstrated significantly greater neuropsychological improvement during treatment than did participants with AN restricting type. Information about cognitive reserve and AN subtype may provide clinicians with valuable prognostic information and help guide treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)302-317
Number of pages16
JournalEating Disorders
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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