Family therapy approaches for anorexia nervosa

This review investigated whether family therapy approaches reduce rates of anorexia nervosa (AN), or associated symptoms, compared to other treatments.

Overall, there is a very limited evidence base in this field. There is some low-quality evidence to suggest that family therapy approaches may be effective compared to treatment as usual in the short term. There is insufficient evidence to be able to determine whether family therapy approaches offer any advantage over educational interventions, other types of psychological therapy, or whether one type of family therapy approach is more effective than another. Most of the studies contributing to the findings were undertaken in adolescents and young adults. 

There are clear implications about how family therapy approaches might be delivered to different age groups, and we need further research to understand what the resulting effects on treatment might be.

We decided to work with a designer to produce a 1-page summary, including graphics, to help explain what the evidence tells us and whether we can trust the evidence.

We would like to hear what people think. The 1-page summary is a work in progress, do you think it is a good way to help make our reviews more accessible?

You can send us comments via twitter or by email (contact@ccdan.org)

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