Clinical Review – Eating Disorders

Shetty,V. and Nicholls, D., 2012.

Eating disorders are serious mental illnesses characterised by severe disturbances in eating behaviour and by distress or excessive concern about body shape or weight.

At least 1.1mn people in the UK are affected by an eating disorder, with young people aged 14-25 years being most at risk.

The onset of anorexia nervosa is typically around 15-18 years but the problem may be increasing in children and young adolescents.

Eating disorders have the highest mortality rates among all psychiatric disorders. They are often associated with severe medical or psychiatric comorbidity. Denial of symptoms and reluctance to seek medical advice makes treatment especially challenging.

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