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An evaluation of efficacy and acceptability of a novel manualised JuniorLEAP group programme for compulsive exercise, for children and adolescents with anorexia nervosa, within an inpatient setting

Mang, L; Garghan, A; Grant, J; Lacey, JH; Matthews, R (2020) An evaluation of efficacy and acceptability of a novel manualised JuniorLEAP group programme for compulsive exercise, for children and adolescents with anorexia nervosa, within an inpatient setting. Eating and Weight Disorders-Studies on Anorexia Bulimia and Obesity. ISSN 1124-4909 https://doi.org/10.1007/s40519-020-00884-w
SGUL Authors: Lacey, John Hubert

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Abstract

Purpose: Compulsive exercise is a symptom and a maintenance factor of eating disorders, which increases the risk of relapse. It has been considered a target for treatment, particularly for anorexia nervosa (AN). This audit aims to review the efficacy and acceptability of a new seven-week JuniorLEAP group therapy programme, for children and adolescents with anorexia nervosa. JuniorLEAP was adapted by the authors and based on the Loughborough Eating Disorder Activity Programme (LEAP) for adults. Methods: 32 children and adolescents with anorexia nervosa were allocated to the group in an in-patient setting using entry criteria. All children and adolescents completed seven weekly sessions of the JuniorLEAP programme, as well as pre- and post-treatment questionnaires, including the Eating Disorder Examination Questionnaire (EDE-Q) and the Compulsive Exercise Test (CET). The children and adolescents were also asked to provide qualitative responses about the acceptability of the group. A paired t-test was conducted to review the efficacy of the JuniorLEAP programme. Results: Significant changes in eating disorder psychopathology was observed, as measured by the EDE-Q, with total mean scores reducing from 3.53 to 2.77 (p= 0.001). Compulsive exercise attitudes were also observed to reduce, as measured by the CET, with total mean scores reducing from 15.39 to 10.90 (p = <0.001). Furthermore, there was a significant reduction in all five subscales of the CET following completion of the group. Qualitative results also demonstrate the group to be acceptable to the patients. Conclusion: This study finds that a new manualised JuniorLEAP group therapy, specifically adapted for adolescents and children with AN, when used as an adjuvant with other therapies in a residential setting, significantly reduces their compulsive exercise, as measured by CET. The patients reported that the treatment was acceptable. Further research testing the new treatment in a randomised controlled trial is now needed, particularly to disentangle the impact of other aspects of standard treatment in reducing compulsive exercise.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is a post-peer-review, pre-copyedit version of an article published in Eating and Weight Disorders - Studies on Anorexia, Bulimia and Obesity. The final authenticated version is available online at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40519-020-00884-w
Keywords: Clinical Psychology, 1701 Psychology, 1103 Clinical Sciences
SGUL Research Institute / Research Centre: Academic Structure > Population Health Research Institute (INPH)
Journal or Publication Title: Eating and Weight Disorders-Studies on Anorexia Bulimia and Obesity
ISSN: 1124-4909
Dates:
DateEvent
30 March 2020Published Online
25 February 2020Accepted
Publisher License: Publisher's own licence
URI: http://openaccess.sgul.ac.uk/id/eprint/111750
Publisher's version: https://doi.org/10.1007/s40519-020-00884-w

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