Modelling trajectories of change in psychopathology and well-being during eating disorder outpatient treatment

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Objective: There are considerable differences in how eating disorder (ED) patients respond to treatment. This study aimed
to identify change trajectories of mental health during treatment. Method: Longitudinal data of 442 patients was used with
five time points during a year of outpatient treatment. ED psychopathology and well-being were used as primary measures. A series of latent growth mixture models were applied to model trajectories of change. Results: Three latent classes were found for ED psychopathology and well-being. For ED psychopathology, a high baseline severity and slow recovery class (55.9% of the patients), a high baseline severity followed by a substantial recovery class (19.9%) and a moderate baseline severity and no significant recovery class (24.2%) were found. For well-being, a low baseline followed by a slow growth class (44.6%), a low baseline and substantial growth class (9.5%) and a moderate and stable well-being class (45.9%) was found. General psychopathology, early symptom change, hope for recovery, intrinsic motivation and the ED type were predictive of class membership in either ED psychopathology or well-being. Conclusions: This study shows variability in ED psychopathology and well-being change trajectories, modelled in meaningful latent recovery classes. These results may
have clinical implications, such as adjusting patients’ treatment based on change trajectories.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages13
JournalPsychotherapy Research
Early online date4 Nov 2022
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print/First online - 4 Nov 2022


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