Adolescent Psychiatry

Lois T. Flaherty
Harvard University Medical School
Cambridge, MA


Family-Based Therapy for Adolescent Anorexia: The Nuts and Bolts of Empowering Families to Renourish Their Children

Author(s): Kathleen Kara Fitzpatrick

Affiliation: Stanford University/Lucile Packard Children's Hospital, Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 401 Quarry Road, Stanford, CA 94305, USA.


Family-based therapy or “Maudsley” has increasing evidence for its efficacy in the treatment of child and adolescent eating disorders. Available in manualized form, widely available, and supported by an ever-increasing research literature, the application of this outpatient treatment continues to be challenging for many front-line clinicians and is a fairly significant departure from previous treatment methods. The current article explores the research supporting this methodology and the iterations of this treatment, such as the use of multi-family groups, parent support groups or with non-psychiatric comorbidities. Further clinical guidance is provided to assist the clinician in identifying tips, strategies and techniques for success in implementation of these skills with families.

Keywords: Family therapy, anorexia, eating disorder, Maudsley, adolescents, renourishment, outpatient treatment, front-line clinicians, non-psychiatric comorbidities, FBT

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Article Details

Page: [267 - 276]
Pages: 10
DOI: 10.2174/2210676611101040267