Cognitive-Affective Status in Anorexia Nervosa: Self-image a | 46384

Clinical and Experimental Psychology


Cognitive-Affective Status in Anorexia Nervosa: Self-image and Absence of Positive Emotions

Suzanna Lundblad, Jonas Magnusson, Berit Hansson and Trevor Archer*

The relationships between eating disorder patterns (Eating Disorders Examination Questionnaire; EDE-Q), alexithymia (Toronto Alexithymia Scale; TAS) and cognitive-affective (Positive Affect Negative Affect Schedule; PANAS) status in forty-nine patients presenting anorexia (AN) in an age- and education-matched comparison with thirty-four healthy controls were investigated. AN patients expressed higher levels of restraint, eating concern, shape concern, weight concern and a higher global score on the Eating Disorders Examination Questionnaire. These responses were linked to higher scores on Emotional identifying, Emotional describing, Emotional orientation and Total scoring on the Toronto Alexithymia Scale. AN patients expressed also less positive affect (PA) and more negative affect (NA) than the healthy matched controls. Linear regression analysis indicated that three factors predicted the AN condition, namely Shape concern (β = 0.689) and Weight concern (β = 0.570) whereas PA was counter-predictive (β = -0.291), whereas for the Control condition, only PA was predictive (β = 0.350). The present findings are discussed from a perspective of documented regional brain dysfunctions underlying cognitive and emotional domains that have been obtained from neuro-imaging studies of anorexia.