Portions of this work were presented at the 2005 International Conference on Eating Disorders, Montreal, Canada.
Importance of multiple purging methods in the classification of eating disorder subtypes†
Article first published online: 29 AUG 2006
Copyright © 2006 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
International Journal of Eating Disorders
Volume 39, Issue 8, pages 648–654, December 2006
How to Cite
Haedt, A. A., Edler, C., Heatherton, T. F. and Keel, P. K. (2006), Importance of multiple purging methods in the classification of eating disorder subtypes. Int. J. Eat. Disord., 39: 648–654. doi: 10.1002/eat.20335
- Issue published online: 24 OCT 2006
- Article first published online: 29 AUG 2006
- Manuscript Accepted: 4 JUL 2006
- The National Institute of Mental Health. Grant Number: R01 MH63758
To examine two assumptions implicit in the subtyping of eating disorders: (1) purging behaviors are interchangeable, and (2) a primary distinction exists between the presence vs. absence of any means of purging.
Data from a longitudinal study of health and eating patterns were used to compare women who reported self-induced vomiting, laxative abuse, or their combination. Further comparisons were made among women who used multiple purging methods (MP), a single purging method (SP), and randomly selected controls who never purged.
Vomiting and laxative abuse were associated with similar levels of eating pathology whereas their combination was associated with greater eating pathology. MP women reported significantly greater eating pathology compared to SP women who reported significantly greater eating pathology compared to controls. Differences were maintained at 10-year follow-up.
Purging behaviors may be interchangeable but the use of multiple purging methods is associated with greater severity over time. © 2006 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Int J Eat Disord 2006; 39:648–654