Virtual Reality-Based Experiential Cognitive Treatment of Obesity and Binge-Eating Disorders

Giuseppe Riva, Monica Bacchetta, Margherita Baruffi, Silvia Rinaldi, Francesco Vincelli, Enrico Molinari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper describes the characteristics and preliminary evaluation of Experiential Cognitive Therapy (Experiential CT), a VR-based treatment to be used in the treatment and assessment of obesity and binge-eating disorders. Experiential CT is a relatively short-term, integrated, patient-oriented approach that focuses on individual discovery. The main characteristic of this approach is the use of Virtual Reality, a new technology that allows the user to be immersed in a computer-generated virtual world. Two preliminary clinical trials were carried out on female patients: 25 patients suffering from binge-eating disorders were included in the first study and 18 obese in the second. At the end of the inpatient treatments, the patients of both samples modified significantly their bodily awareness. This modification was associated to a reduction in problematic eating and social behaviours. No subjects experienced simulation sickness.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-219
Number of pages11
JournalClinical Psychology and Psychotherapy
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)
  • Clinical Psychology


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