Neuropsychological and Cognitive Correlates of Recovery in Anorexia Nervosa

Jessica A. Harper, Brooks Brodrick, Erin Van Enkevort, Carrie J. McAdams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Objective: To identify clinical or cognitive measures either predictive of illness trajectory or altered with sustained weight recovery in adult women with anorexia nervosa. Methods: Participants were recruited from prior studies of women with anorexia nervosa (AN-C) and in weight-recovery following anorexia nervosa (AN-WR). Participants completed a neuropsychological battery at baseline and clinical assessments at both baseline and follow-up. Groups based on clinical outcome (continued eating disorder, AN-CC; newly in recovery, AN-CR; sustained weight-recovery, AN-WR) were compared by using one-way ANOVAs with Bonferroni-corrected post hoc comparisons. Results: Women with continued eating disorder had poorer neuropsychological function and self-competence at baseline than AN-CR. AN-CR showed changes in depression and externalizing bias, a measure of self-related attributions. AN-WR differed from both AN-CC and AN-CR at baseline in externalizing bias, but only from AN-CC at outcome. Discussion: Neuropsychological function when recently ill may be a prognostic factor, while externalizing bias may provide a clinical target for recovery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)491-500
Number of pages10
JournalEuropean Eating Disorders Review
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2017


  • anorexia nervosa
  • attribution bias
  • cognitive rigidity
  • self-perception

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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