Karačić M, Wales JA, Arcelus J, Palmer RL, Cooper Z, Fairburn CG
Behav Res Ther 2011 Sep;49(9):573-7
OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to examine how alcohol intake changes during and after transdiagnostic cognitive behaviour therapy for eating disorders (CBT-E). Additionally, the paper considers the relationship between alcohol consumption, eating disorder diagnosis and current major depressive episode at the time of first assessment.
METHOD: One hundred and forty nine outpatients with an eating disorder (body mass index over 17.5) were divided into high or low alcohol intake groups (HIG and LIG) according to their intake at pre-treatment assessment. Their alcohol intake and eating disorder psychopathology were examined over the course of treatment and follow-up.
RESULTS: There was no difference between the groups on response of the eating disorder to treatment. The HIG significantly reduced their alcohol intake following treatment whilst the intake of the LIG remained stable over the course of treatment and follow-up. There were no group differences in major depression and overall severity of eating disorder at baseline.
CONCLUSIONS: The response to CBT-E was not influenced by baseline level of alcohol use. The mean alcohol intake of the heavy drinking subjects decreased without being specifically addressed by the treatment.