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Keywords:

  • anorexia nervosa;
  • gender differences;
  • psychiatric prognosis;
  • cohort study

Abstract

Objective:

The current study investigates the background and outcome of anorexia nervosa (AN) in young men.

Method:

All (N = 61) men, born in 1968–1977 with hospital care in Sweden between 1987 and 1992 due to AN, were compared with the general population. Information about socioeconomic background, health-related outcome (hospital care for AN, other psychiatric diagnoses, abuse of alcohol/drugs and/or suicide attempt), and social outcome (major income from sick leave/sick pension or ≥ 6 months social welfare, living with birth parents, and living with child and partner; education level) was taken from national registers.

Results:

On a group level, the findings suggest some differences between male patients with AN and the male population without AN concerning social background, capacity to support oneself, and living with partner and child. Mental ill-health outcome was almost the same for men with AN as for the general population.

Conclusion:

Male gender in AN — on a group level — suggests a good psychiatric prognosis. © 2006 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Int J Eat Disord 2006; 39:662–666