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Understanding the experience of drop-out from the treatment of anorexia nervosa

Warner, Samantha J., Eivors, Alison, Button, Eric and Turner, Keith (2003) Understanding the experience of drop-out from the treatment of anorexia nervosa. European eating disorders review, 11 (2). pp. 90-107. ISSN 1099-0968

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Abstract

Research suggests that approximately 50 per cent of patients drop out prematurely from services for anorexia nervosa. This research set out to investigate the possible reasons for this high drop-out rate. The experiences of eight women were explored through written accounts and semi-structured interviews. The information was analysed using a social constructionist revision of grounded theory. A central theme of control emerged which was affected by interactions with the wider social system. The cumulative battle for control between the anorectic and others appeared to result in the act of dropping out as the treatment approach, timing and context recreated the setting conditions of lost control. The organizational and clinical implications of this model are discussed.

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