Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Anorexia Nervosa: An Update

  • Riccardo Dalle GraveEmail author
  • Marwan El Ghoch
  • Massimiliano Sartirana
  • Simona Calugi
Eating Disorders (C Grilo, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Eating Disorders


Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for anorexia nervosa (AN), based on Beck’s cognitive theory, was developed in a “generic” form in the early eighties. In recent years, however, improved knowledge of the mechanisms involved in maintaining eating disorder psychopathology has led to the development of a “specific” form of CBT, termed CBT-E (E = enhanced), designed to treat all forms of eating disorders, including AN, from outpatient to inpatient settings. Although more studies are required to assess the relative effectiveness of CBT-E with respect to other available treatments, the data indicate that in outpatient settings it is both viable and promising for adults and adolescents with AN. Encouraging results are also emerging from inpatient CBT-E, particularly in adolescents, and clinical services offering CBT-E at different levels of care are now offered in several countries around the world. However, CBT-E requires dissemination in order to become widely available to patients.


Cognitive behavior therapy Eating disorders Anorexia nervosa Bulimia nervosa Inpatient treatment Adolescence 



The authors are very grateful to Christopher G. Fairburn for his suggestions and comments.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

Riccardo Dalle Grave, Marwan El Ghoch, Massimilano Sartirana, and Simona Calugi declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This research did not rely on any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Riccardo Dalle Grave
    • 1
    Email author
  • Marwan El Ghoch
    • 1
  • Massimiliano Sartirana
    • 1
  • Simona Calugi
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Eating and Weight DisordersVilla Garda HospitalGardaItaly

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