Contexts of Treatment
Severe anorexia nervosa: Outcomes from a medical stabilization unit
Article first published online: 10 DEC 2010
Copyright © 2010 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
International Journal of Eating Disorders
Volume 45, Issue 1, pages 85–92, January 2012
How to Cite
Gaudiani, J. L., Sabel, A. L., Mascolo, M. and Mehler, P. S. (2012), Severe anorexia nervosa: Outcomes from a medical stabilization unit. Int. J. Eat. Disord., 45: 85–92. doi: 10.1002/eat.20889
- Issue published online: 14 DEC 2011
- Article first published online: 10 DEC 2010
- Manuscript Accepted: 12 SEP 2010
- anorexia nervosa;
- medical outcomes;
We report data from the medical stabilization and refeeding of patients with severe anorexia nervosa admitted over a 15-month period.
Through chart review and computerized data collection, we evaluated demographic and clinical data from 25 consecutive patients admitted to our medical stabilization unit from October 2008 to January 2010.
In this adult-patient population with a median body mass index (BMI) of 13.1 kg/m2 (interquartile range, 11.0–14.4), 44% developed hypoglycemia, 76% had abnormal liver function, 83% had abnormal bone density, 45% developed refeeding hypophosphatemia, and 92% were hypothermic. Severe liver function abnormality predicted the development of hypoglycemia (p = 0.02, OR 9.78, CI: 1.55–61.65). No clinical features predicted hypophosphatemia, including admission BMI (p = 0.19), serum glucose level (p = 0.21), elevated liver function tests (p = 0.39 for AST), or initial amount of kilocalories consumed (p = 0.06).
Patients with the most severe cases of anorexia nervosa have a high prevalence of serious medical complications during initial refeeding. © 2010 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. (Int J Eat Disord 2012)