Differences in coping across stages of recovery from an eating disorder

Ellen E. Fitzsimmons, Anna M. Bardone-Cone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Objective This study examined the relation between coping skills and eating disorder recovery by comparing these skills across healthy controls, fully recovered, partially recovered, and active eating disorder cases. Full recovery was defined using physical, behavioral, and psychological components. Method Individuals formerly seen for an eating disorder at a Midwestern clinic were categorized as having an active eating disorder (n = 53), as partially recovered (n = 15), or as fully recovered (n = 20). The coping skills of these groups were compared to each other and to 67 healthy controls. Results Healthy controls and fully recovered individuals utilized similarly high levels of task- and avoidance-oriented coping and similarly low levels of emotion-oriented coping. Partially recovered individuals looked more similar to those with an active eating disorder. Discussion Results provide support for a comprehensive definition of eating disorder recovery, of which healthy coping may be an integral component, and for the re-evaluation of the notion of "maladaptive" coping.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)689-693
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Eating Disorders
Issue number8
StatePublished - Dec 2010


  • coping
  • eating disorders
  • recovery


Dive into the research topics of 'Differences in coping across stages of recovery from an eating disorder'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this