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Patients and therapists experiences with a new treatment programme for eating disorders that combines physical exercise and dietary therapy: the PED-t trial. A qualitative study protocol

09 Jan 2018


Women with bulimia nervosa and binge eating disorder often suffer for many years before they seek professional help. Evidence-based treatments like cognitive–behavioural therapy (CBT) might be poorly accessible, and about 50% of those who receive CBT respond to it. Such outcome may reflect the heterogeneous nature of eating disorders, and addressing this heterogeneity calls for expanding the portfolio of treatment options. In particular, it is important to explore such options’ acceptability, tolerability and affordability expressed through experiences with the treatment. This protocol outlines the rationale and design of a qualitative study. It captures experiences from patients and therapists who were involved in a randomised controlled trial (RCT) exploring the efficacy of a new group-based treatment programme combining physical exercise and dietary therapy.

Methods and analysis

15 patients with bulimia nervosa or binge eating disorder, 10 therapists (physical trainers and dietitians) and 6–10 patients who dropped out of the RCT will be semistructurally interviewed. All interviews will be analysed using a systematic text condensation approach.

Ethics and dissemination

Results will be presented in peer-reviewed international journals, and at relevant international conferences. Key findings will be available to study participants as well as to patient organisations and health authorities. The overall study meets the intent and requirements of the Health Research Act and the Declaration of Helsinki. It is approved by the regional committee for medical research ethics (2013/1871).

Trial registration number

NCT02079935; Pre-results.

Click here to view the full article which appeared in BMJ Open

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