An Integration of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Bulimia Nervosa: A Case Study Using the Case Formulation Method

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bulimia nervosa, cognitive‐behavioral psychotherapy, interpersonal psychotherapy

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Objective: The current study provides an illustration of an integration of cognitive‐behavioral therapy (CBT) and interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT) for the treatment of bulimia nervosa (BN), based on the case formulation strategy.

Method: A 25‐year‐old Hispanic female referred herself for the treatment of eating difficulties and depressed mood. Diagnostic criteria were met for BN, major depressive episode, and alcohol abuse. Components of both CBT and IPT were utilized throughout the course of treatment.

Results: CBT techniques appeared to be most effective in eliminating binge eating and binge drinking behavior, whereas IPT techniques seemed to be most effective in reducing purging behavior. Results revealed that the client was no longer experiencing clinically significant symptoms of BN, depression, or alcohol abuse at end of treatment and follow‐up (18 months after treatment onset).

Discussion: Findings support the integration of CBT and IPT for the treatment of BN and, potentially, other eating disorders.

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Citation / Publisher Attribution

International Journal of Eating Disorders, v. 37, issue 2, p. 171-174