In anorexia nervosa (AN) patients immunologic alterations are known, although their clinical significance remains a matter of debate. Currently, no recommendation can be given on the safety and immunogenicity of indicated vaccinations in this malnourished population.
In this exploratory study, 10 AN patients' (eight female, two male, mean age 31.1 years, SD 16.3 years; mean BMI 14.8 kg/m2, SD 1.6 kg/m2) antibody levels against H1N1 influenza were measured before vaccination, and were followed-up for two and three weeks after vaccination. They were compared with the immunological response in normal weight population, as reported in the literature. Clinical and socio-demographical data were collected.
In the AN group, H1N1 vaccination showed to be sufficiently immunogenic and safe, comparable to published data of normal weight population.
The findings provide preliminary evidence that vaccination seems recommendable even in extremely underweight AN patients. Further studies are needed to corroborate the present findings. © 2011 by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. (Int J Eat Disord 2012)