Which age groups have the highest prevalence of anorexia nervosa?

Updated: Jun 10, 2019
  • Author: Bettina E Bernstein, DO; Chief Editor: Caroly Pataki, MD  more...
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Anorexia nervosa has been observed in both the very young and very old, but the disorder is primarily a phenomenon of puberty and early adulthood. Eighty-five percent of patients have onset of the disorder between the ages of 13 and 18 years (although a survey of adolescents by Swanson et al found a median age of onset of 12.3 y). [16, 13, 52] Patients who are older at the time of onset of the disorder have a worse prognosis, as do patients with an onset before age 11 years. [53]

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