EDV and La Trobe Research Partnership - Eating Disorders Victoria
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This page explains the Guided Self-help Stepped Care Treatment for Eating Disorders Research Project, a collaborative project between La Trobe University and Eating Disorders Victoria.

EDV and La Trobe Research Partnership

Research is essential in developing new and effective treatment tools for eating disorders. EDV has partnered with La Trobe University to undertake a research project around Guided Self-help Stepped Care Treatment for eating disorders. Participants in the study will receive no-cost treatment for eating disorders by guided self-help or cognitive behavioral therapy. 

The study hopes to learn:

  • Whether providing guided self-help in the first instance can increase access to eating disorder treatment 
  • How best to design a larger treatment program in a community service such as EDV

What is Guided Self-Help Stepped Care (GSH-SC) for Eating Disorders?

This treatment approach uses self-help book ‘Overcoming Binge Eating’, which is the recommended self-help book for treating eating disorders.

It is appropriate for a range of eating disorders, including those in which binge eating behaviour is not present. This approach has shown to be as equally effective in the treatment of eating disorders as CBT-E. Particpants will be guided by a clinician through the self-help steps in nine, 30-minute session across 16 weeks. Participants will be asked to: 

  • Read the chapters in order and at a pace that matches your treatment schedule  
  • Complete all self-help activities provided in each step and bring this work to the guided sessions 

Each guided session will be of 30 minutes duration and will guide you to discuss and reflect on the tasks you have completed, problem solve barriers, and prepare for the following self-help step. 

Symptoms will be assessed at the end of the 5th guided session. This assessment will involve repeating the online questionnaires conducted before treatment. Depending on the results of these assessments, participants will either continue with guided self-help and complete the remaining 4 guided self-help sessions, or treatment will be “stepped up” to a 20-session course of CBT-E. 

What is Cognitive Behaviour Therapy for Eating Disorders (CBT-E)?

CBT-E is an evidence-based treatment for eating disorders. It consists of a 20-session course of treatment offered over 20 weeks.

Sessions 1 – 7 are conducted twice weekly, sessions 8 – 17 are conducted weekly and sessions 18 – 20 are conducted fortnightly. Each session runs for 50 minutes. Participants will be asked to engage in between-session work such as monitoring your eating patterns, thoughts, and emotions, reading provided materials, challenging and changing eating-related thoughts and behaviours and undertaking behaviour experiments. Participants will also be asked to undertake collaborative weighing in sessions. This is where participants and the clinician check your weight together in each session. 

How to get involved

You may qualify for participation in the study if you:

  • Are 18 years or over 
  • Are experiencing an eating disorder 
  • Have a BMI greater than 17.5kg/m2 
  • Are willing to have an assessment with your GP prior to and during participation  
  • Are medically stable 

If you decide to take part in the research, you would be asked to: 

  • Undertake a series of pre-treatment screening interviews and questionnaires 
  • Have a medical assessment with your GP that may involve blood tests 
  • Be randomized to receive either guided self-help stepped care or cognitive behaviour therapy for eating disorders 
  • Attend face-to-face appointments at Eating Disorders Victoria in Abbotsford and via telehealth  
  • Complete a series of online questionnaires throughout treatment and at 6, 12, 18 and 24 months after treatment ends 

Your decision to participate in research is voluntary. 

You will need to be assessed by your GP for medical stability prior to participation, and during participation if clinically indicated. Appointments with your GP are at your own cost. There are no other costs associated with participation in this research study, nor will you be paid.  

Expressions of interest

Please read the client advertisement here. Then, if you would like to see if you may be eligible, you can complete the following brief screening questionnaire. At the end of the questionnaire you will have the option of entering your first name and contact details if you would like to be contacted for further information or express interest in the study:  

https://redcap.link/4k55knuq 

Or contact:

Study Coordinator, Annemarie Hindle
a.hindle@latrobe.edu.au 

Need help?

We know that finding treatment for an eating disorder can be overwhelming. If you need any assistance with this process, including help finding clinicians in Victoria who specialise in treating eating disorders, please contact the EDV Hub Mon – Fri between 9.30am – 4.30pm.

Contact the Hub
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