What about the assessment of personality disturbance in adolescents with eating disorders?

  • Santino GaudioEmail author
  • Antonios Dakanalis

Several aetiological and maintenance (i.e. the trans-diagnostic cognitive-behavioural and cognitive-interpersonal) models and studies (included longitudinal ones) highlight the salient role of personality traits in eating disorder (ED) and body-related pathology [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10], which typically emerges during adolescence [2, 9, 10, 11, 12]. Specific personality profiles of ED patients discriminate different ED’ diagnoses and symptoms [5], and subjects with anorexia nervosa (AN) and bulimia nervosa (BN) tend to have certain personality traits (e.g. obsessions and perfectionism) that often first occur in childhood before the onset of an ED, thereby potentially reflecting neurobiological risk factors for the ED onset [2, 3, 7, 9, 10]. Further, an interesting meta-analytic study by Martinussen and colleagues, recently published in this journal [13], seems to confirm that personality disorders (PDs) are highly comorbid in both AN and BN as more than half of the patients...


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.

Informed consent

For this type of study, formal consent is not required.


  1. 1.
    Dakanalis A, Carrà G, Calogero R, Zanetti MA, Gaudio S, Caccialanza R, Riva G, Clerici M (2015) Testing the cognitive-behavioural maintenance models across DSM-5 bulimic-type eating disorder diagnostic groups: a multi-study. Eur Arch Psychiatry Clin Neurosci 265(8):663–776. doi: 10.1007/s00406-014-0560-2 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Schmidt U, Treasure J (2006) Anorexia nervosa: valued and visible. A cognitive-interpersonal maintenance model and its implications for research and practice. Br J Clin Psychol 45:343–366. doi: 10.1348/014466505X53902 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Dakanalis A, Clerici M, Carrà G (2016) Narcissistic vulnerability and grandiosity as mediators between insecure attachment and future eating disordered behaviors: a prospective analysis of over 2,000 freshmen. J Clin Psychol 72(3):279–292. doi: 10.1002/jclp.22237 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Dakanalis A, Carrà G, Clerici M, Riva G (2015) Efforts to make clearer the relationship between body dissatisfaction and binge eating. Eat Weight Disord 20(1):145–146. doi: 10.1007/s40519-014-0152-1 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Rotella F, Fioravanti G, Ricca V (2016) Temperament and personality in eating disorders. Curr Opin Psychiatry 29:77–83. doi: 10.1097/YCO.0000000000000212 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Riva G, Gaggioli A, Dakanalis A (2013) From body dissatisfaction to obesity: how virtual reality may improve obesity prevention and treatment in adolescents. Stud Health Technol Inform 184:356–362. doi: 10.3233/978-1-61499-209-7-356 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Cassin SE, von Ranson KM (2005) Personality and eating disorders: a decade in review. Clin Psychol Rev 25(7):895–916. doi: 10.1016/j.cpr.2005.04.012 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Pla-Sanjuanelo J, Ferrer-García M, Gutiérrez-Maldonado J, Riva G, Andreu-Gracia A, Dakanalis A, Fernandez-Aranda F, Forcano L, Ribas-Sabaté J, Riesco N, Rus-Calafell M, Sánchez I, Sanchez-Planell L (2015) Identifying specific cues and contexts related to bingeing behavior for the development of effective virtual environments. Appetite 87:81–89. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2014.12.098 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Grilo CM (2004) Subtyping female adolescent psychiatric inpatients with features of eating disorders along dietary restraint and negative affect dimensions. Behav Res Ther 42(1):67–78. doi: 10.1016/S0005-7967(03)00073-1 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Kaye WH, Wierenga CE, Bailer UF, Simmons AN, Bischoff-Grethe A (2013) Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels: the neurobiology of anorexia nervosa. Trends Neurosci 36(2):110–120. doi: 10.1016/j.tins.2013.01.003 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Dakanalis A, Timko CA, Carrà G, Clerici M, Zanetti MA, Riva G, Caccialanza R (2014) Testing the original and the extended dual-pathway model of lack of control over eating in adolescent girls. A two-year longitudinal study. Appetite 82:180–193. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2014.07.022 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Dakanalis A, Carrà G, Calogero R, Fida R, Clerici M, Zanetti MA, Riva G (2015) The developmental effects of media-ideal internalization and self-objectification processes on adolescents’ negative body-feelings, dietary restraint, and binge eating. Eur Child Adolesc Psychiatry 24(8):997–1010. doi: 10.1007/s00787-014-0649-1 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Martinussen M, Friborg O, Schmierer P, Kaiser S, Øvergård KT, Neunhoeffer AL, Martinsen EW, Rosenvinge JH (2016) The comorbidity of personality disorders in eating disorders: a meta-analysis. Eat Weight Disord. doi: 10.1007/s40519-016-0345-x CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Gaudio S, Di Ciommo V (2011) Prevalence of personality disorders and their clinical correlates in outpatient adolescents with anorexia nervosa. Psychosom Med 73(9):769–774. doi: 10.1097/PSY.0b013e318235b9b5 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Magallón-Neri E, González E, Canalda G, Forns M, De La Fuente JE, Martínez E, García R, Lara A, Vallès A, Castro-Fornieles J (2014) Prevalence and severity of categorical and dimensional personality disorders in adolescents with eating disorders. Eur Eat Disord Rev 22(3):176–184. doi: 10.1002/erv.2268 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Shiner RL, Allen TA (2013) Assessing personality disorders in adolescents: Seven guiding principles. Clin Psychol-Sci Pr 20(4):361–377. doi: 10.1111/cpsp.12047 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    American Psychiatric Association (2013) Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders, 5th edn. American Psychiatric Association, WashingtonCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Skodol AE (2014) Commentary: assessing personality disorder in adolescents from the perspective of DSM-5. Clin Psychol Sci Pr 21(1):84–90. doi: 10.1111/cpsp.12058 CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Neuroscience, Functional PharmacologyUppsala University, BMCUppsalaSweden
  2. 2.Department of Medicine and SurgeryUniversity of Milano-BicoccaMonzaItaly

Personalised recommendations