Cerebral Atrophy and Vigilance Performance in Patients with Anorexia nervosa and Bulimia nervosaLaessle R.G. · Krieg J.C. · Fichter M.M. · Pirke K.M.
Max-Planck-Institute for Psychiatry, Munich, and Psychosomatic Hospital Roseneck, Prien/Chiemsee, FRG
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The relationship between ventricular size, as a measure of brain atrophy, and performance on a vigilance task was investigated in 39 patients with anorexia or bulimia nervosa during the acute stage of their illness. Compared to normal controls, the patients performed significantly more poorly in the cognitive task. Half of the patients displayed enlarged ventricles. However, the patients with ventricular dilatation did not perform worse in the cognitive test than patients with normally sized ventricles. Other clinical characteristics, such as symptom severity or duration of illness, were also not correlated with ventricular size. These results support the interpretation that cerebral atrophy per se does not have severe consequences on the neuropsychological or psychopathological status in eating disorder patients.
© 1989 S. Karger AG, Basel
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