Pre Conference Workshop

Eating Disorders, Trauma, and Trauma-related Disorders: A Case of Did and an Overview of the Clinical Science

Thursday, March 22
8:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Location: Salon 1

In Part 1, Dr. Brewerton begins by presenting a case of dissociative identity disorder (DID) presenting with depression and binge eating that spawned his clinical research interest in trauma and eating disorders (ED). Video clips taken at various stages during the course of treatment will illustrate the dissociative process and the various alters identified. He illustrates how these “alters” or ego states take on specific adaptive functions and separate identities, which protect the self and are often archetypal in nature. Notably, one of the alters in this case involved binge eating and purposeful weight gain as a form of protection. Evolving concepts from psychotherapy theory and neuroscience are highlighted during the presentation. The use of non-identifying clinical information and videoclips during this part of the presentation is being done with the complete, written informed consent of the patient.

In Part 2, Dr. Brewerton will present an overview of the current state of clinical science and practice regarding traumatized ED patients. Individuals with EDs report very high rates of lifetime traumatic events, and they appear to be especially sensitive to stress, adversity and the development of PTSD. Participants will become familiar with literature describing the clinical characteristics of ED patients with comorbid posttraumatic sequelae, e.g., PTSD, Complex PTSD, and Dissociative Disorders, among others. Important principles for treating traumatized individuals with EDs, including the necessity of moving beyond sequential treatment to the development of integrated treatment protocols, are discussed in detail using clinical vignettes and recommended principles. Integration of existing evidence-based treatments including CBT for EDs, DBT, Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) Prolonged Exposure (PE), and Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR), psychodynamic psychotherapy, and rational psychopharmacology will be emphasized. Recent research suggests that ED clinicians view integrated treatment for individuals with ED and PTSD as a top priority yet they have several concerns about administering such a treatment. Conversely, there is evidence that non-ED clinicians often have negative reactions to EDs, including feeling frustrated, hopeless, worry and a lack of competence in treating them. 

Learning Objectives:

Timothy D. Brewerton

Clinical Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
Medical University of South Carolina
Isle Of Palms, South Carolina

Dr. Brewerton is Clinical Professor of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) in Charleston, where he is also in private practice. He is board certified in general, child/adolescent and forensic psychiatry, as well as addiction medicine; a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association (APA) and the American Academy of Child Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP); a Founding Fellow of the Academy of Eating Disorders; former president of the Eating Disorders Research Society and the South Carolina Psychiatric Association; author of approximately 150 articles/book chapters; Editor of the Clinical Handbook of Eating Disorders: An Integrated Approach (2004), Co-editor of Eating Disorders, Addictions, and Substance Use Disorders: Research, Clinical and Treatment Perspectives (2014). Dr. Brewerton has reviewed for over 50 scientific journals and serves on the Editorial Boards of the International Journal of Eating Disorders, Eating Disorders: The Journal of Treatment and Prevention, Current Food and Nutrition Science, and Eating and Weight Disorders. He has received numerous awards recognizing his accomplishments, including the 2013 Craig Johnson Award for Clinical Practice and Training by the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) and the Honorary Certified Eating Disorder Specialist award by the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals (IAEDP), Best Doctors in America, and America’s Top Psychiatrists.


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Eating Disorders, Trauma, and Trauma-related Disorders: A Case of Did and an Overview of the Clinical Science


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