Recurrent acute hepatic dysfunction in severe anorexia nervosa



Anorexia nervosa (AN) is an eating disorder predominantly affecting young women. Abnormal liver function tests (LFT's) resulting from AN is well-described but to date few cases of dramatic rises in liver enzymes have been described. We report a 32-year-old women with severe anorexia having dramatic rise in LFT's with liver failure during extremely poor nutritional status. Acute rise in liver enzymes observed on several occasions in this patient resulted from ischaemic hepatitis secondary to liver hypoperfusion. Clinicians caring for patients with severe AN should monitor haemodynamic parameters with the knowledge that acute liver failure can be a consequence of sudden liver hypoperfusion. Therapeutic intervention comprising volume support with gradual nutritional support results in normalization of LFT's. © 2009 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Int J Eat Disord 2010; 43:770–772