Professor Ivan Eisler

MA, PhD, CPsychol, AcSS

Joint Head of CAMHS Eating Disorders Service | Professor of Family Psychology and Family Therapy

Ivan Eisler is Joint Head of the Trust’s Child and Adolescent Eating Disorders Service.

He is also a Professor of Family Psychology and Family Therapy at the Institute of Psychiatry, Kings College London, and Head of the Section of Family Therapy there.

Other roles

In addition to his clinical and research roles Dr Eisler is also a family therapy trainer and has played a key role in developing training courses in family therapy at the Institute of Psychiatry and the Institute of Family Therapy. He has also contributed to teaching and the development of other family therapy courses in the UK and abroad, including Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Italy, Norway, the Netherlands and Singapore.

Together with members of the Trust’s Child and Adolescent Eating Disorders team, he has set up specialist training for child and adolescent eating disorders centres across Scandinavia, a similar training for services in Ontario province, Vancouver and Calgary in Canada, and smaller facilities for professional groups in the Czech Republic, Hong Kong and the Netherlands.

With colleagues in Leeds, he has developed a family therapy manual relating to adolescent self-harm and is working on a similar family therapy manual for substance misuse.

Other roles include:

Member of the Editorial Advisory Board for ‘Family Process’

Member of the Editorial Advisory Board for ‘European Eating Disorder Review’

Chair of the Exam Board for the MSc in Family Therapy degree at the Institute of Psychiatry

Academic member of the Academy of Social Sciences

Previously he has been Editor of the ‘Journal of Family Therapy’, a Member of the International Advisory Board for the ‘Journal of Family Psychology’ and a member of the Editorial Board of Weight and Eating Disorders. He has had an active role in developing Training and Occupational Standards in Family Therapy as Chair of the Working Party Training Standards for the European Family Therapy Association, a Member of the Training Standards Committee at the UK Council for Psychotherapy. He has also been the Chairman of the Institute of Family Therapy (London), and an Independent Clinical Advisor for the Office of the Health Service Commissioner

Background

Dr Eisler gained his BA and MA in Philosophy/Psychology at New College Oxford in 1971, continuing on to a Diploma of Psychology at Charles University, Prague. He completed a PhD at the University of London in 1993. He worked as a Clinical Psychologist in Prague in the School’s Psychological Service and in Fostering and Adoption up until 1982 when he moved to London where he joined the clinical research team at the Institute of Psychiatry headed by Professor Gerald Russell investigating psychological treatments for eating disorders. Alongside his research and teaching roles at the Institute of Psychiatry he has worked as Clinical Psychologist the Bethlem and Maudsley Hospitals in a number of roles including Assistant Head of Clinical psychology between 1995 -1997. In 1995, together with Dr Christopher Dare, he sat up the first UK specialist outpatient Child and Adolescent Eating Disorders service.

He won the Outstanding Research Publication Award from the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy in 1988, the Positive Practice Award from the National Institute for Mental Health in England in 2004, and the Outstanding Clinician Award from the Academy for Eating Disorders in 2009. He is also the recipient of the 2011 Rosenberry Award for contributions to the fields of Psychology and Behavioural Sciences.

Research

Ivan Eisler has had a longstanding interest in the development and evaluation of psychological treatments, and a special interest in family therapy and its integration with other psychotherapies. Among other research he has conducted a number of treatment trials evaluating psychological treatments, particularly in the treatment of eating disorders but also in addiction, depression and self harm. He has published widely on these topics and the work that he and his colleagues have done in developing and evaluating treatments for child and adolescent eating disorders is widely acknowledged as a key part of the evidence base for current treatment guidelines in this area recommended by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence in the UK and similar guidelines in other countries.

Published

Articles in journals:

Eisler I, Szmukler GI & Dare C (1985). Systematic observation and clinical insight – are they compatible? An experiment in recognizing family interactions. Psychological Medicine, 15, 173-188.

Szmukler GI, Eisler I, Russell GFM and Dare C (1985) Parental “Expressed Emotion”, anorexia nervosa and dropping out of treatment. British Journal of Psychiatry, 147, 265-271.

Eisler I and Szmukler GI (1985). Social class as a confounding variable in the Eating Attitudes Test. Journal of Psychiatric Research, 19, 171-176.

Szmukler GI, Eisler I, Gillies C and Hayward M (1985). The implications of anorexia nervosa in a ballet school. Journal of Psychiatric Research, 19, 177-182.

Szmukler GI, Berkowitz R, Eisler I, Leff J and Dare C (1987). ‘Expressed Emotion’ in individual and family settings: A comparative study. British Journal of Psychiatry, 151, 174-178.

Russell GFM, Szmukler GI, Dare C and Eisler I (1987). An evaluation of family therapy in anorexia nervosa. Archives of General Psychiatry, 44, 1047-1056.

Russell GFM, Checkley SA, Feldman J and Eisler I (1988). A controlled trial of d-fenfluramine in bulimia nervosa. Clinical Neuropharmacology. 11, S146-159.

Eisler I, Dare C and Szmukler GI (1988). What’s happened to family interaction research? An historical account and a family systems viewpoint. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy 14, 45-61.

Ratnasuriya RH, Eisler I, Szmukler GI and Russell GFM (1989). Outcome and prognostic factors after 20 years of anorexia nervosa. Annals of New York Academy of Science, 575, 567-568.

Dare C, Eisler I, Russell GFM and Szmukler GI (1990). The clinical and theoretical impact of a controlled trial of family therapy in anorexia nervosa. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, 16, 39-57.

Eisler I and Le Grange D (1990). Excessive exercise and anorexia nervosa. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 9, 377-386.

Eisler I (1990). Meta-analysis: magic wand or exploratory tool? Journal of Family Therapy, 12, 223-228.

Hodes M, Eisler I and Dare C (1991). Family therapy for anorexia nervosa in adolescence: a review. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine. 84, 359-362.

Ratnasuriya RH, Eisler I, Szmukler GI and Russell GFM (1991). Anorexia nervosa: Outcome and prognostic factors after 20 years. British Journal of Psychiatry, 158, 495-502.

Eisler I (1992). Aspects of family therapy. Current Opinion in Psychiatry, 5,396-399.

Le Grange D, Eisler I, Dare C and Russell GFM (1992). Evaluation of family treatments of adolescent anorexia nervosa. International Journal of Eating Disorders. 12, 347-357.

Le Grange D, Eisler I, Dare C and Hodes M (1992). Family criticism and self-starvation: a study of expressed emotion. Journal of Family Therapy, 14, 177-192.

Eisler I and Dare C (1992). You can’t teach an old dog new tricks: Teaching research to family therapy trainees. Journal of Family Psychology, 5, 418-431.

Fahy T and Eisler I (1993). Impulsivity and eating disorder. British Journal of Psychiatry, 162, 193- 197.

Fahy T, Eisler I and Russell GFM (1993). A placebo controlled trial of d-fenfluramine in bulimia nervosa. British Journal of Psychiatry, 162, 597-603.

Fahy T, Eisler I and Russell GFM (1993). Personality disorder and treatment response in bulimia nervosa. British Journal of Psychiatry, 162, 765-770.

Le Grange D and Eisler I (1993). The link between eating disorder and excessive exercise: A critical review. Eating Disorders Review, 1, 100 – 119.

Dare C, Le Grange D, Eisler I and Rutherford J (1994). Redefining the psychosomatic family. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 16, 211-225.

Dodge E, Hodes M, Eisler I and Dare C (1995). Family therapy for bulimia nervosa in adolescents: an exploratory study. Journal of Family Therapy, 17, 59-78.

Dare C, Eisler I, Colahan, C Crowther, R Senior and E Asen (1995). The listening heart and the Chi-square: clinical and empirical perceptions in the family therapy of anorexia nervosa. Journal of Family Therapy 17, 19-45.

Eisler I, Dare C, Russell GFM, Szmukler GI, Dodge L and Le Grange D (1997). Family and individual therapy for anorexia nervosa: A 5-year follow-up. Archives of General Psychiatry, 54, 1025-1030.

Russell GFM, Treasure J and Eisler I (1998). Mothers with anorexia nervosa who underfeed their children: Their recognition and management. Psychological Medicine, 28, 93-108.

Serrano-Ikkos E, Lask B, Whitehead B and Eisler I (1998). Incomplete adherence after pediatric heart and heart-lung transplantation. Journal of Heart and Lung Transplantation, 17, 1177-1183.

Hodes M, Dare C, Dodge E and Eisler I (1999). The assessment of expressed emotion in a standardised family interview. Journal of Child psychology and Psychiatry, 40, 617-625

Stern S, Doolan M, Staples E, Szmukler GI and Eisler I (1999). Disruption and reconstruction: Narrative insights into the experience of family members caring for a relative diagnosed with serious mental illness. Family Process, 38, 353-369.

Dare C and Eisler I (2000). A multi-family group day treatment programme for adolescent eating disorder. European Eating Disorders Review, 8, 4-18.

Eisler I, Dare C, Hodes M, Russell GFM, Dodge E and le Grange D (2000). Family therapy for adolescent anorexia nervosa: The results of a controlled comparison of two family interventions. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 41, 727-736

Dare C, Chania E, Eisler I, Hodes M and Dodge L (2000). The Eating Disorder Inventory as an instrument to explore change in adolescents in family therapy for anorexia nervosa. European Eating Disorders Review, 8, 369-383.

Dare C, Eisler I, Russell GFM, Treasure J and Dodge E (2001). Psychological therapies for adult patients with anorexia nervosa: A randomized controlled trial of outpatient treatments. British Journal of Psychiatry, British Journal of Psychiatry, 178, 216-221

Besharat MA, Eisler I and Dare C (2001). The self- and other-blame scale (SOBS): The development and reliability of an observational measure of guilt and blame in families. Journal of Family Therapy, 23, 208-223

Eisler I (2002). The scientist practitioner and family therapy: A way forward, a straightjacket or a distraction? Journal of Family Therapy, 125-133.

Yandoli D, Eisler I, Robbins C, Mulleady G and Dare C. (2002). A comparative study of family therapy in the treatment of opiate users in a London Drug clinic. Journal of Family Therapy, 24, 402-422.

Lemmens GM, Verdegem S, Heireman M, Lietaer G, van Houdenhove B, Sabbe B and Eisler I (2003) Helpful Events in Family Discussion Groups with Chronic Pain Patients: Differences in Perception between Therapists/Observers and Patients/Family Members. Family Systems and Health, 21, 37-53

Lemmens GM, Wauters S, Heireman M, Eisler I, Lietaer G, and Sabbe B (2003) Beneficial factors in Family Discussion Groups of a psychiatric day clinic: differences in perception between the therapeutic team and the families. Journal of Family Therapy, 25, 41-63

Eisler I (2003) Editorial. Journal of Family Therapy, 25, 1-2

Eisler I (2003) Editorial. Journal of Family Therapy, 25, 113-114

Eisler I (2003) Afterthougt: Why talking (and listening) is better than building bridges. Journal of Family Therapy, 25, 436-442.

Eisler I (2004) Editorial and commentary. Journal of Family Therapy 26, 83-88.

Eisler I (2004) Editorial. Journal of Family Therapy 26, 103-104.

Eisler I (2004) Living in several professional languages. Journal of Family Therapy, 26, 311-313.

Lemmens GM, Eisler I, Heireman M, Van Houdenhove B, and Sabbe B (2005) Family Discussion Groups for Patients with Chronic Pain. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Family Therapy, 26, 21-32.

Eisler I (2005) The empirical and theoretical base of family therapy and multiple family day therapy for adolescent anorexia nervosa. Journal of Family Therapy, 27, 104-131.

Perkins S, Schmidt U, Eisler I, Treasure J, et al (2005) Why do adolescents with bulimia nervosa choose not to involve their parents in treatment? European Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 14, 376-85

Eisler I (2005) A rose by any other name. Journal of Family Therapy, 27, 1-2.

Whitney J. and Eisler I. (2005) Theoretical and empirical models around caring for someone with an eating disorder: the reorganisation of family life and inter-personal maintenance factors. Journal of Mental Health, 6, 575-585.

Tseliou E and Eisler I (2005). “A two-sided coin”: A systemic-discursive approach to ethnic stereotypes and ideological dilemmas in heterosexual English-Greek couples’ discourse. Metalogos, 8, 65-83.

Eisler I (2005) Editorial. Journal of Family Therapy, 27, 307-308.

Eisler I (2006) Moving with the times. Journal of Family Therapy, 28 111-112.

Winkley K, Landau, S, Eisler I. and Ismail, K. (2006) A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials of psychological interventions to improve glycaemic control in patients with type 1 diabetes. BMJ, 333, 65-68.

Eisler I (2006). Editorial. Journal of Family Therapy. 28, 227-228

Eisler I (2006) Heart of the matter – A conversation across continents. Journal of Family therapy, 28, 329-331

Lemmens GM, Eisler I, Migerode L, Heireman M and Demyttenaere K (2007)

Family discussion group therapy for major depression: a brief systemic multi-family group intervention for hospitalized patients and their family members. Journal of Family Therapy, 29, 49-68.

Lemmens. GM, Buysse, A, Heene, E, Eisler, I and Demyttenaere, K Marital satisfaction, conflict communication, attachment style and psychological distress in couples with a hospitalised depressed patient. Acta Neuropsychiatrica, 19, 109-117

Eisler I, Simic M, Russell GFM and Dare C (2007) Family therapy for adolescent anorexia nervosa: A five year follow-up study of a controlled comparison of two family interventions. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 48, 552-560

Schmidt U, Lee, S, Beecham J, Perkins, S, Treasure J, Yi I, Winn S, Robinson, P, Murphy R, Keville S, Johnson-Sabine, E, Jenkins, M, Frost S, Dodge L, Berelowitz M and Eisler I (2007) A Randomized Controlled Trial of Family Therapy and Cognitive-Behavioral Guided Self-Care for Adolescents with Bulimia Nervosa or Related Disorders. American Journal of Psychiatry 164, 591-598.

Tseliou E and Eisler I (2007) ‘YOU’ and ‘I’, ‘US’ and ‘THEM’: A systemic-discursive approach to the study of ethnic stereotypes in the context of British-Greek heterosexual couple relationships. Family Process 46, 512-522

Winn S, Perkins S, Walwyn R, Schmidt U, Eisler I et al (2007) Predictors of mental health problems and negative caregiving experiences in carers of individuals with bulimia nervosa International Journal of Eating Disorders 40, 171-178.

Perkins, S; Schmidt, U; Eisler, I; Treasure, J; Berelowitz, M; Dodge, E; Frost, S; Jenkins, M; Johnson-Sabine, E; Keville, S; Murphy, R; Robinson, P; Winn, S; Yi, l. (2007) Motivation to change in recent onset and long-standing bulimia nervosa: Are there differences? Eating and Weight Disorders. 12, 61-69.

Eisler, I. (2007) Treatment models, brand names, acronyms and evidence-based practice. Journal of Family Therapy. 29, 183-185.

Eisler, I. (2008) Strengthening the voice of family therapy. Journal of Family Therapy. 30, 1-2.

Schmidt U, Lee S, Perkins S, Eisler I, Treasure J, Beecham J, Berelowitz M, Dodge L, Frost S, Jenkins M, Johnson-Sabine E, KevilleS , Murphy R, Robinson P, Winn S, Yi I, (2008) Do Adolescents with Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified or Full-Syndrome Bulimia Nervosa Differ in Clinical Severity, Comorbidity, Risk Factors, Treatment Outcome or Cost? International Journal of Eating Disorders, 41,498–504

Schmidt, U. Andiappan, M. Grover, M., Robinson, S. Perkins, S., Dugmore, O., Landau, S., Treasure, J., Eisler, I and Williams. C. (2008) A Randomised Controlled Trial of the Effectiveness of a CD-ROM Based Cognitive Behavioural Self-Care Intervention for Bulimia Nervosa. British Journal of Psychiatry 193, 493–500.

Eisler I (2008) Valedictory. Journal of Family Therapy, 30, 219-221

House, J. Eisler, I., Simic, M., Micali M. (2008) Diagnosing eating disorders in adolescents: A comparison of the Eating Disorder Examination and the Development and Well-Being Assessment. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 41, 535-41

Rivett M and Eisler I (2008) Family therapy and the head of Janus. Journal of Family Therapy, 30, 331-334.

Le Grange D and Eisler I (2009) Family interventions in adolescent anorexia nervosa. Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinics of North America 18, 159-173

Schmidt, U. Andiappan, M. Grover, M., Robinson, S. Perkins, S., Dugmore, O., Landau, S., Treasure, J., Eisler, I and Williams. C. (2008) A Randomised Controlled Trial of the Effectiveness of a CD-ROM Based Cognitive Behavioural Self-Care Intervention for Bulimia Nervosa. British Journal of Psychiatry 193, 493-500

Lemmens GM, Eisler I, Buysse A, Heene E and Demyttenaere K (2009) The effects on mood of adjunctive single family and multi-family group therapy in the treatment of hospitalised patients with major depression: An RCT and 15 months follow-up study. Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics 78, 98-105

Lemmens GM, Eisler I, Dierick P, Lietaer G and Demyttenaere K (2009) Therapeutic factors in systemic multi-family groups for major depression: patients’ and partners’ perspectives Journal of Family Therapy, 31, 250-269

N. Pretorius, J. Arcelus, J. Beecham, H. Dawson, F. Doherty, I. Eisler, C. Gallagher, S. Gowers, G. Isaacs, E. Johnson-Sabine, A. Jones, C. Newell, J. Morris, L. Richards, S. Ringwood, L. Rowlands, M. Simic, J. Treasure, G. Waller, C. Williams, I. Yi, M. Yoshioka and U. Schmidt (2009) Cognitive-behavioural therapy for adolescents with bulimic symptomatology: The acceptability and effectiveness of internet-based delivery. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 47, 729-736.

Lemmens GM, Eisler I, Buysse A, Heene E and Demyttenaere K (2009)The effects on mood of adjunctive single family and multi-family group therapy in the treatment of hospitalised patients with major depression: An RCT and 15 months follow-up study Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics, 78, 98-105.

Lemmens GM, Eisler I, Dierick P, Lietaer G and Demyttenaere K (2009) Therapeutic factors in systemic multi-family groups for major depression: patients’ and partners’ perspectives Journal of Family Therapy, 31, 250-269.

Hartmann,M.; Bazner,E.; Wild,B.; Eisler,I.; Herzog,W. (2010) Effects of Interventions Involving the Family in the Treatment of Adult Patients with Chronic Physical Diseases: A Meta-Analysis. Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics, 79, 136-148.

Book chapters:

Eisler I (1988). Anorexia nervosa and the family. In D Scott (ed) Practical Approaches to Bulimia and Anorexia Nervosa. Croom Helm, London.

Dare C & Eisler I (1992). Family therapy for anorexia nervosa. In PJ Cooper & A Stein (eds) Feeding Problems and Eating Disorders in Children and Adolescents, pp147-160. Harwood Academic Press, Chur.

Russell GFM, Dare C, Eisler I & Le Grange D (1992). Controlled trials of family treatments in anorexia nervosa. In Halmi KA (ed) Psychobiology and Treatment of Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia Nervosa, pp 237-262. American Psychiatric Press, Washington DC.

Eisler I (1993) Families, family therapy and psychosomatic illness. In S. Moorey and M. Hodes (eds) Psychological Treatments in Human Disease and Illness, pp 42-62. Gaskill, London.

Eisler I (1993) Family therapy for anorexia nervosa. In S. Moorey and M. Hodes (eds) Psychological Treatments in Human Disease and Illness, pp 209-222. Gaskill, London.

Eisler I (1995). Family models of eating disorders. In GI Szmukler, C Dare and J Treasure (eds) Handbook of Eating Disorders: Theory, Treatment and Research, pp 155-176. Wiley, London.

Dare C & Eisler I (1995). Family therapy. In GI Szmukler, C Dare and J Treasure (eds) Handbook of Eating Disorders: Theory, Treatment and Research, pp 333-350. Wiley, London.

Dare C & Eisler I (1995). Family therapy and eating disorder. In KD Brownell and C Fairburn (eds) Comprehensive Textbook of Eating Disorders and Obesity. Guilford press, New York.

Eisler, I (1995). Combining individual and family therapy in the treatment of adolescent anorexia nervosa. In J Werne (ed) Treating Eating Disorders. Jossey-Bass, San Francisco.

Dare C and Eisler I (1997). Family therapy for anorexia nervosa. In Garner DM & Garfinkel PE (eds) Handbook of Psychotherapy for Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia, 2nd edition. Guilford press, New York.

Dare C & Eisler I (2001). Family therapy and eating disorder. In KD Brownell and C Fairburn (eds) Comprehensive Textbook of Eating Disorders and Obesity. 2nd Edition. Guilford press, New York.

Eisler, I (2001). Emerging markets or migrating cultures? Uncertainties and opportunities (for both men and women). In M. Nasser, M. Katzman & R. Gordon (eds) Eating Disorders. The New Socio -Cultural Debate.

Eisler I, LeGrange D & Asen K (2003) Family interventions. In J. Treasure, U. Schmidt & E. van Furth (eds) Handbook of Eating Disorders: Theory, Treatment and Research, 2nd Edititon, Wiley, London

Eisler I (2002). Family Interviewing. Issues of theory and practice. In Rutter M and Taylor E (eds) Child and Adolescent psychiatry: Modern Approaches. 4th Edition, Oxford, Blackwells.

Eisler I (2004) Common Psychiatric Problems – Eating Disorders. MIMS Handbook of Psychiatry.

Eisler I (2004) Rodinná terapie poruch příjmu potravy. In F.D. Krch (ed) Poruchy příjmu potravy. Grada, Praha (in Czech).

Eisler I (2006) Common Psychiatric Problems – Eating Disorders. MIMS Handbook of Psychiatry

Eisler I & Lask J (2007) Family Therapy and its evidence base. In B Yule & O Udwin (eds) Evidence-Based Psychotherapies in Child and Adolescent Mental Health Practice. Occasional Paper No 27. Association for Child and Adolescent Mental Health. Oxford, Blackwells.

Fairbairn P and Eisler I (2007) Intensive multiple family day treatment: Clinical and training perspectives. In S. Cook and A. Almosnino (Eds.) Therapies Multifamiliales Des Groupes Comme Agents Therapeutiques (Multiple family therapy: groups as therapeutic agents).

Eisler I and Lask J (2008) Family interviewing and family therapy. In Rutter M, Bishop D, Pine D, Scott S, Stevenson J, Taylor E and Thapar A (eds) Rutter’s Child and Adolescent psychiatry, 5th Edition, Oxford, Blackwells.

Eisler I. (2010) Anorexia nervosa and the family (2009) In JH Bray and M Stanton (Eds). Wiley-Blackwell handbook of family psychology. Oxford, UK: Wiley-Blackwell.

Eisler I, Lock J and Le Grange D (2010) Family-based treatments for adolescent anorexia nervosa. In Grilo C and Mitchell J (Eds) The Treatment of Eating Disorders Guilford Press.

Konstantellou A, Eisler I. & Campbell M. The Family Context: Cause, Effect or Resource. In J Treasure and J Alexander (Eds) A Collaborative Approach to Eating Disorders, Routledge (in press).

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