Anorexia Nervosa

30/12/2013 by admin | Psychiatry


A diagnosis requires all four of the following:

  1. Body weight 15% below expected, or BMI< 17.5 kg/m2
  2. Self induced weight loss (by dieting, excess exercising, vomiting etc.)
  3. Morbid fear of being fat (an overvalued idea rather than a delusion)
  4. Endocrine disturbance (e.g. amenorrhoea, pubertal delay or lanugo hair)


Common features:

  • Anaemia
  • Bradycardia and hypotension
  • Feeling cold and tired- cold peripheries in a warm room
  • Expressing a high interest in preparing or buying food



Incidence is 4 per 100,000 with a peak age at 18 years. 1 in 10 cases occur in males.


Risk factors

High social class


Interest in modeling or ballet

Academic prowess



Cognitive behavioural therapy/ support therapy

Raising calorie intake



Hospitalisation indicated if there is a weight loss of over 35%

50% eventually recover completely.

Mortality rate 5% usually from starvation or suicide.

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