What is the link between anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa?

Updated: Jun 10, 2019
  • Author: Bettina E Bernstein, DO; Chief Editor: Caroly Pataki, MD  more...
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Answer

Although the DSM-5 separates anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa as two separate disorders, there continues to be consideration that these two disorders may be part of a unified eating disorder. Recent research at the University of Chicago with children and adolescents who met criteria for DSM-5 restrictive type (AN) or binge eating/purging type AN (AN-BE/P) differed in their eating patterns as youths with AN-R consumed meals and snacks more regularly relative to youths with AN-BE/P; youths with AN-BE/P who skipped dinner were associated with a greater number of binge eating episodes, and skipping breakfast was associated with a greater number of purging episodes. Thus, it appeared that youths with AN-R followed a more regular pattern but consumed insufficient amounts of food during meals and youth with AN-BE/P tended to have more irregular eating patterns. [12]


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