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Guideline

Eating disorders: recognition and treatment

Read time: 1 mins
Last updated:14th Jun 2018

This guideline covers assessment, treatment, monitoring and inpatient care for children, young people and adults with eating disorders. It aims to improve the care people receive by detailing the most effective treatments for anorexia nervosa, binge eating disorder and bulimia nervosa.

Eating disorders are defined by the negative beliefs and behaviours they cause people to have about themselves and their eating, body shape and weight. They can cause people to adopt restricted eating, binge eating and compensatory behaviours (such as vomiting and excessive exercise). The emotional and physical consequences of these beliefs and behaviours maintain the disorder and result in a high mortality rate from malnutrition, suicide and physical issues (such as electrolyte imbalances). This is most common in people with anorexia nervosa. There are also other physical complications (such as osteoporosis) and psychiatric comorbidities (such as anxiety disorders) that affect the wellbeing and recovery of people with an eating disorder and raise the cost of treatment.

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