Interpersonal Psychotherapy for the Treatment of Eating Disorders

Marian Tanofsky-Kraff, Denise E. Wilfley

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT) is a focused, time-limited treatment that targets interpersonal problem(s) associated with the onset and/or maintenance of EDs. IPT is supported by substantial empirical evidence documenting the role of interpersonal factors in the onset and maintenance of EDs. IPT is a viable alternative to cognitive behavior therapy for the treatment of bulimia nervosa and binge eating disorder. The effectiveness of IPT for the treatment of anorexia nervosa requires further investigation. The utility of IPT for the prevention of obesity is currently being explored. Future research directions include enhancing the delivery of IPT for EDs, increasing the availability of IPT in routine clinical care settings, exploring IPT adolescent and parent-child adaptations, and developing IPT for the prevention of eating and weight-related problems that may promote full-syndrome EDs or obesity.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of Eating Disorders
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780199940318
ISBN (Print)9780195373622
StatePublished - Sep 18 2012


  • Eating disordered symptoms
  • Interpersonal relationships
  • Obesity
  • Social functioning


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