Day-Hospital Multifocal Integrated Treatment for Anorexia Nervosa in Adolescents: A One-Year Follow-Up

Valeria Zanna, Maria Chiara Castiglioni, Michela Criscuolo, Ilenia Chianello, Maria Elisei, Giulia Cinelli, Fiorenzo Laghi, Silvia Mazzoni, Stefano Vicari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The current guidelines for treatment of Anorexia Nervosa (AN) in children and adolescents recommend an integrated multidisciplinary approach as the elective intervention for this disorder. Nevertheless, there is insufficient evidence on the results of an integrated approach for the treatment of AN adolescent patients, especially in a Hospital setting. This study aims to analyze clinical and psychological changes occurring in adolescent patients after completion of a Day-Hospital Multifocal Integrated Treatment (MIT) for Anorexia Nervosa. The sample consisted of 60 adolescents with AN or Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (EDNOS) restrictive type, aged 11 to 18 years, and their parents. Clinical course was evaluated at 3, 6 and 12-month follow-up periods. Our results showed clinical remission in a good percentage of patients. In general, we found a significant reduction of the eating psychopathology, whereas we did not detect any significant improvement in body dissatisfaction, perfectionism, and relational difficulties. This positive trend was confirmed at 3, 6, and 12-month follow-up, despite the increase of drop-outs. These results suggest that the proposed treatment is reasonably effective, because it aims to contain and reduce the acute phase of the disease in a limited time and in a hospital setting, but it is necessary to continue the treatment with targeted psychotherapeutic interventions to address the deeper psychological discomfort underlying the eating disorder.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1460-1471
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Child and Family Studies
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2017


  • Adolescence
  • Anorexia Nervosa
  • Eating disorders
  • Family therapy
  • Integrated treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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