Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New Self-Help Technology Set to Combat Eating Disorders

21.03.2005


A new interactive multi-media self-help package for people diagnosed with eating disorders developed by a medical researcher at the University of Glasgow is now set to be delivered over the internet to adolescent sufferers.



The package, initially developed as a CD-ROM cognitive-behavioural self-help tool for the treatment of the eating disorder bulimia nervosa (BN), is set to revolutionise therapy. Bulimia nervosa is a common and disabling condition with significant personal, social and relationship costs.

University of Glasgow psychiatrist Dr Chris Williams and colleagues from the Institute of Psychiatry, London have now been awarded £191,000 from the Medical Research Council to launch an on-line version of the innovation, which is to be delivered to adolescents and young adults (aged 13 to 20) affected by bulimia nervosa.


Initial trials of the first stand-alone computerised treatment for eating disorder patients have been very successful and all patients involved in the pilot made significant improvements. The CD-ROM proved to be particularly effective in reducing vomiting and laxative abuse. This is important, as research has revealed that an early reduction in vomiting is a good predictor of positive longer-term outcomes in the treatment of bulimia.

Many patients with bulimia nervosa find it hard to access evidence based treatment such as cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT). Although it is one of the preferred treatments for emotional and behavioural problems, CBT is labour intensive, and often not readily available.

Eating disorders are an increasing problem is Scotland, with about 10% of young women affected by such conditions. Given the rise in the number of sufferers and the under-provision of eating disorder services, a major challenge is to make treatment more accessible. Now, computer-based packages such as this are helping to bridge the treatment gap.

The shame and secretiveness surrounding bulimia makes computer-based treatment particularly appealing to sufferers. Other key advantages of the interactive intervention are that it allows an individually tailored delivery, it uses a variety of media, and a mixture of teaching styles to facilitate the learning of self-management.

A recent study into the usefulness of the CD-ROM involving 47 sufferers of bulimia revealed significant reductions in binging and self-induced vomiting. The pilot programme, run by the Eating Disorders Unit at South London and Maudsley NHS Trust lasted for 8 weeks and provided the treatment without any therapist input.

Modules include sessions on why people develop eating disorders, how to fight craving for food and how to break the vicious circle of Bulimia. Each session takes about 45 minutes at the computer and is backed up by additional support to put the learning into practice.

Dr Chris Williams from the University of Glasgow said: "Eating disorders becoming very widespread in society. Not enough people are able to get treatment, but computer based approaches can offer people new ways to access much needed help. The CD-ROM and internet packages aim to provide another treatment option for people -and our experience to date is that this can be as effective as seeing a specialist practitioner. Many people feel really ashamed of the symptoms of bulimia such as bingeing and vomiting or purging of food. Some may actually prefer to use a CD-ROM rather than see a practitioner as a result. The computer-guided self-help treatment program for Bulimia has real potential to be utilised in routine clinical practice - especially as a first step to care."

Only three short sessions of 20 minutes of clinician time is required to introduce the use of the CD-ROM, compared with a typical individual treatment time of 12 hours. The intervention has considerable potential for use in primary care and other settings as a first step in BN treatment.

Jenny Murray | alfa
Further information:
http://www.gla.ac.uk
http://www.gla.ac.uk:443/newsdesk/pressreleases/stories.cfm?PRID=3264

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Laser activated gold pyramids could deliver drugs, DNA into cells without harm
24.03.2017 | Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

nachricht What does congenital Zika syndrome look like?
24.03.2017 | University of California - San Diego

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

Im Focus: Researchers Imitate Molecular Crowding in Cells

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Argon is not the 'dope' for metallic hydrogen

24.03.2017 | Materials Sciences

Astronomers find unexpected, dust-obscured star formation in distant galaxy

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Gravitational wave kicks monster black hole out of galactic core

24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>