Neurocognitive Factors

Historically, neurocognitive impairment has been viewed as directly or indirectly related to the malnutrition of anorexia nervosa (Katzman et al. 2001) and is reversible following weight restoration. This perspective has been increasingly challenged by research that has shown impairments in cognition, emotion, and personality in both malnourished and weight-restored patients (Deep et al. 1995; Gillberg et al. 2007; Godart et al. 2002; Srinivasagam et al. 1995). Neuropsychological research has established that anorexia nervosa is associated with cognitive inflexibility (set shifting), an excessively detailed information processing style (weak central coherence), and neglect of the overall picture (gestalt) (Holliday et al. 2005; Roberts et al. 2005; Southgate et al. 2007; Steinglass et al. 2006; Tchanturia et al. 2002, 2004; Tokley and Kemps 2007). These deficits are manifest in the core anorexia nervosa psychopathol-ogy (Southgate 2005; Tchanturia et al. 2007).

Study of neurocognitive deficits in patients with bulimia nervosa has been limited. Available data suggest that central coherence, a measure of the ability to see the "big picture" and not get lost in details, displays a pattern similar for both anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa, but that patients with bulimia nervosa seem to have weaker central coherence (Lopez et al. 2008). Other studies suggest that compared with expected performance in a normed population, patients with bulimia nervosa have more impulsiveness and inattentiveness (Jones et al. 1991).

Breaking Bulimia

Breaking Bulimia

We have all been there: turning to the refrigerator if feeling lonely or bored or indulging in seconds or thirds if strained. But if you suffer from bulimia, the from time to time urge to overeat is more like an obsession.

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