Video Game Therapy for Emotional Regulation and Impulsivity Control in a Series of Treated Cases with Bulimia Nervosa

Ana B. Fagundo, Juan J. Santamaría, Laura Forcano, Cristina Giner-Bartolomé, Susana Jiménez-Murcia, Isabel Sánchez, Roser Granero, Maher Ben-Moussa, Nadia Magnenat-Thalmann, Dimitri Konstantas, Tony Lam, Mikkel Lucas, Jeppe Nielsen, Richard G.A. Bults, Salomé Tarrega, José M. Menchõn, Rafael De La Torre, Valentina Cardi, Janet Treasure, Fernando Fernández-Aranda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

47 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Although standard psychological treatments have been successful in treating several core features in eating disorders (ED), other characteristics such as emotional regulation or impulsivity appear to be more resistant to change. There is a growing body of evidence to support the efficacy of cognitive remediation for cognitive and emotional difficulties in ED. Playmancer/ Islands is a video game (VG) designed to specifically treat mental disorders, characterized by problems in impulse control. The objective of the game is to increase self-control over emotions, decision making and behaviours. The aim of this study is to describe the results from a consecutive series of nine bulimia nervosa patients who were treated with the VG in addition to cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT). The outcomes included clinical and psychopathological questionnaires, and physiological measures were obtained during the VG. Emotional regulation improved, heart rate variability increased, and respiratory rate and impulsivity measures reduced after the treatment. These findings suggest that VG training may enhance treatment for ED. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and Eating Disorders Association. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and Eating Disorders Association.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)493-499
JournalEuropean Eating Disorders Review
Volume21
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2013

Keywords

  • bulimia nervosa
  • cognitive stimulation
  • eating disorders
  • emotional regulation
  • executive functions
  • impulsivity
  • video game therapy

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