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Title: An interpretative phenomenological analysis of the experience of developing anorexia nervosa prior to the menarche
Author: Shepheard-Walwyn, Louise
Awarding Body: University of London
Current Institution: Royal Holloway, University of London
Date of Award: 2012
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Anorexia nervosa has been reported to occur in children (Bostic, Muriel, Hack, Weinstein & Herzog, 1997; Nielsen, Lausch & Thomsen, 1997), which presents a challenge to clinical consensus that puberty is an important trigger for the development of the disorder (Crisp, 1967: 1980; 1983; deCastro & Goldstein, 1995; Koff & Rierden, 1993; Nicholls, 2007). There has been limited research conducted into anorexia nervosa presenting in pre-menarcheal children and none of the existing studies have directly investigated the young person's perspective. The study aimed to explore how the young person who developed anorexia nervosa prior to the menarche understands the disorder using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA: Smith, 1996; Smith, Flowers & Larkin, 1997). The use of semi-structured interviews allowed for the exploration of: what their understanding of anorexia nervosa is; what it means to them; what led to the development of anorexia nervosa; what they feel the impact of having the disorder had been and how they feel about their size. Seven girls who developed anorexia nervosa prior to the menarche from two, inner- London, NHS Child and Adolescent Eating Disorder Services participated in semi- structured interviews. IPA of the interviews led to the development of four themes. There were similarities and differences in how each theme was described and some novel findings emerged. Although there were some similarities between the findings and existing theoretical models, other important issues arose which have implications for clinical practice.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Clin.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available