Reward Dependence and Harm Avoidance among Patients with Binge-Purge Type Eating Disorders

Sigal Gat-Lazer, Ronny Geva, Eitan Gur, Daniel Stein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Introduction: The Cloninger's Psychobiological Model of Temperament and Character includes temperamental dimensions such as reward dependence (RD) and harm avoidance (HA). Studies of RD differentiate between sensitivity to reward (SR) versus to punishment (SP). We investigated the interrelationship between HA and RD in acutely ill patients with binge/purge (B/P) type eating disorders (EDs) and following symptomatic stabilization. Methods: Fifty patients with B/P EDs were assessed at admission to inpatient treatment, 36 of whom were reassessed at discharge. Thirty-six controls were similarly assessed. Participants completed Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire (TPQ), Sensitivity to Punishment and Sensitivity to Reward Questionnaire (SPSRQ), and took the Gambling Task. Results: Patients with B/P EDs had higher TPQ-RD and lower TPQ-HA accompanied by lower SPSRQ-SR and SPSRQ-SP. SPSRQ-SP correlated positively and negatively with TPQ-HA and TPQ-RD, respectively. Conclusions: Combination of lower TPQ-HA, lower SPSRQ-SP, and greater risk-taking inclination may maintain disordered eating in patients with B/P EDs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)205-213
Number of pages9
JournalEuropean Eating Disorders Review
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 May 2017

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and Eating Disorders Association.


  • binge-purge eating disorders
  • gambling task
  • harm avoidance
  • personality dimensions
  • reward dependence


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