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A new instrument measuring disturbed eating patterns in community populations: development and initial validation of a five-item scale (EDS-5)

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This paper reports on the development and validation of a brief scale, the Eating Disturbance Scale (EDS-5), as a screening instrument for problematic eating disorders in normal populations. A nationwide sample of 6313 subjects completed 22 questions about eating patterns. Using principal component analysis, these questions were cut down to five items, forming a scale. From another epidemiological study (N = 835), 51 female subjects responded to these five questions in addition to a clinical interview. The scale yielded a Cronbach alpha of 0.83 and 0.86, respectively, Also, a sensitivity and specificity of 0.90 and 0.88 was found with respect to DSM-IV eating disorders. The concurrent and construct validity show significant correlations with Eating Disorder Inventory subscales measuring disturbed eating (M = 0.55, range 0.44–0.73), and even higher correlations with similar factors from the self-report version of the Eating Disorder Examination (M = 0.73, range 0.60–0.89). The results suggest that the EDS-5 is sensitive to disordered eating patterns and that this instrument appears promising for screening purposes in community samples. Copyright © 2001 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and Eating Disorders Association.
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Document Type: Miscellaneous

Affiliations: University of Tromsø, Department of Psychology, Norway

Publication date: 2001-03-01

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