University of Twente Student Theses


Four decades of qualitative research : a meta-synthesis of external factors that help and hinder in eating disorder recovery

Berg, Nina van den (2021) Four decades of qualitative research : a meta-synthesis of external factors that help and hinder in eating disorder recovery.

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Abstract:Eating disorders are serious mental disorders that can have several physical and psychological consequences or comorbidities. Recovery rates from EDs are not satisfactorily high. Treatment options in this field already exist, but do not have satisfying outcomes. The existing treatments are often based on theoretical assumptions and not taking the views of those with lived experiences into account. However, treatment is only one part of ED recovery. In the last decades, researchers were engaged in incorporating the patient’s perspectives on what helps or hinders recovery in ED. Several external and intrapersonal aspects of what is helping or hindering in the recovery process that goes beyond the treatment setting were found. Since existing meta-syntheses mostly focused on specific external aspects like treatment, this study has a broader focus and aimed to summarize all discovered external aspects on what helps and hinders recovery for ED patients. Therefore, a systematic review was applied leading to 44 included qualitative studies that examine the experience of personal recovery. The studies were analysed based on the generic descriptive-interpretative framework for analysing qualitative data by Elliot and Timulak (2005). The analysed information was summarized into three overarching themes: 1) Social environment 2) Treatment 3) Outside Stimuli. Each main theme contains several subthemes which further specify the aspects of helping and hindering factors regarding ED recovery. The outcome of this study is in line with existing research on ED recovery. The analysis revealed that, against existing research foci, social environment is mentioned the most across the included studies and is hence an essential aspect for patients in their recovery process. This insight might contribute to the development of further guidelines for clinicians, family members, or the patient itself, and thus increases the remission rates of EDs. Future research should validate and further analyse qualitative studies with an adjusted inclusion focus.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology MSc (66604)
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