Caregiver accommodation in adolescents with avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder and anorexia nervosa: Relationships with distress, eating disorder psychopathology, and symptom change

Allison F. Wagner, Hana F. Zickgraf, Susan Lane-Loney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objective: The role of family and caregiver accommodation is a well-defined maintenance factor for anxiety disorders and OCD. Family accommodation for patients with eating disorders is beginning to be described and characterized, but gaps in the literature remain. The current project compares levels of accommodation in families of those with anorexia nervosa (AN) to those with avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder (ARFID). It additionally establishes whether accommodation changes over the course of treatment and the extent to which these changes are related to changes in eating disorder pathology. Methods: A total of 39 adolescents with ARFID and 59 with AN presenting to a partial hospitalization program were included, with measures completed at intake and discharge. Results: Caregivers of adolescents with AN and those with ARFID reported similar levels of accommodation, with the exception of the Reassurance Seeking subscale of the Accommodation and Enabling Scale for Eating Disorders (AESED). Additionally, accommodation decreased significantly from intake to discharge for both patient groups. Intake AESED scores were also significantly related to caregiver distress, and changes in AESED scores were related to decreases in relevant eating disorder psychopathology for both groups. Conclusions: The results of the current study highlight the importance of considering family accommodation for ARFID patients and point to the need for future research to capture changes in accommodation over the course of treatment in relation to the delivery of evidence-based interventions and subsequent changes in ED symptoms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)657-670
Number of pages14
JournalEuropean Eating Disorders Review
Volume28
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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