The effect of inpatient treatment to inhibitory control and attentional bias in individuals with eating disorders
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Impaired inhibitory control and disorder-specific attentional bias have been implicated in the etiology and maintenance of eating disorders (EDs) (Bartholdy et al., 2017; Albery et al., 2016). The intervention common to all the individuals with ED during inpatient treatment is the restoration of regular eating. Therefore, we aimed to assess the effect of restoration of regular eating to inhibitory control and attentional bias to ED specific stimuli in individuals with ED by using emotional Go/No-Go task. The possible moderating effects of duration of illness, depression, anxiety, impulsivity and ED symptoms were also assessed. The sample consisted of 62 women, of whom 19 were individuals with bulimia nervosa binging/purging (BN-BP), 17 with anorexia nervosa restrictive (AN-R), 10 with anorexia nervosa binging/purging (AN-BP) and 16 were psychiatrically controlled healthy individuals (HCs). The results indicated that although inhibitory control improves during treatment in individuals with AN-R to food and in BN-BP to body stimuli attentional bias to body stimuli is still present in individuals with ED despite the subtype. However, attentional avoidance towards food stimuli in individuals with AN-R decreases during treatment. BMI, depression, anxiety, impulsivity and ED symptoms did not yield any moderating effects on RTs of the first measurement to any type of stimuli. Treatment and group interaction effect was not statistically significant in relation to any type of stimuli, however, it became significant on RTs to body stimuli after controlling the interaction with trait anxiety. Also the duration of illness affected inhibitory control and attentional bias in individuals with ED.
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