Low baseline startle in anorexia nervosa patients

Laura Bellodi, Riccardo Maria Martoni, Elisa Galimberti, Maria Cristina Cavallini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study examined baseline startle magnitude, using eye blink response and skin conductance response in anorexia nervosa patients.Twenty female in-patients with anorexia nervosa and an equal number of female healthy controls were tested. Baseline startle response was assessed during blank screens while four startling loud sounds (a 116. dB, 1. s, 250. Hz tone) were delivered with a time interval ranging from 35 to 55. s. It was investigated if BMI and state anxiety correlated with physiological responses.The clinical sample showed a lower baseline startle reflex measured with both indices, than healthy controls.Across the whole sample, a single regression model partially explained the relationship between BMI and baseline skin conductance response.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)26-29
Number of pages4
JournalProgress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2013


  • Anorexia nervosa
  • Baseline startle reflex
  • Body mass index
  • Eye blink response
  • Skin conductance response

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Pharmacology


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