Psychological and behavioural characteristics of females with anorexia nervosa in Singapore

  • Evangeline  S. L. Tan
  • Russell M. F. HawkinsEmail author
Original Article



This study aimed to compare a sample of females with anorexia nervosa in Singapore with international clinical and population samples from published data in terms of endorsement of risk factors related to anorexia nervosa, severity of eating pathology and levels of psychosocial impairment and to explore the nature of the relationships between the anorexia nervosa risk factors and adherence to Asian cultural values.


Data from the Eating Disorder Inventory-3 (EDI-3), the Eating Attitudes Test (EAT-26), the Perceived Sociocultural Pressure Scale (PSPS), the Ideal Body Stereotype Scale (IBSS), the Eating Disorder Examination Questionnaire (EDE-Q), the Clinical Impairment Assessment Questionnaire, and the Asian American Values Scale—Multidimensional (AAVS-M) were collected from 41 female patients (13–31 years old) who presented for treatment of anorexia nervosa at the Singapore General Hospital.


The profile and presentation of anorexia nervosa in Singapore was comparable to that observed in the Western clinical samples in terms of levels of endorsement of the risk factors for anorexia nervosa. No protective benefit of orientation to Asian culture was found.


The observed pattern of general similarity of presentation between Western data and Singaporean data, together with the finding that no protective benefit of orientation to Asian culture was observed, suggests that it may be appropriate to directly apply evidence-based Western models of intervention to the treatment of anorexia nervosa in Singapore.


Anorexia nervosa Culture Risk factors Singapore 


Complaince with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

Ethics approval was obtained from the Human Research Ethics Committee of James Cook University and the Singapore General Hospital.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyJames Cook UniversityCairnsAustralia

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