Purging disorder: An ominous variant of bulimia nervosa?

Authors


Abstract

Objective

The current study evaluates the clinical significance and distinctiveness of purging disorder (PD), an eating disorder characterized by recurrent purging in the absence of objective binge episodes (OBE) among normal-weight individuals.

Method

Women with PD (n = 37), bulimia nervosa (BN; n = 39), or no eating disorder (n = 35) completed clinical assessments. Women with PD (n = 23) and BN (n = 25) completed 6-month follow-up assessments.

Results

Compared with controls, both eating-disordered groups reported significantly higher eating, Axis I, and Axis II pathology. Compared with BN, PD was associated with significantly lower eating concerns, disinhibition, and hunger. At 6-month follow-up, rates of remission did not differ significantly between PD and BN, and crossover between disorders was rare.

Conclusion

PD appears to be a clinically significant and potentially distinctive eating disorder. © 2005 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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