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University of Iowa professor identifies new eating disorder
Date:9/4/2007

the study also provided evidence that purging disorder is a distinct illness. Women with purging disorder differed from women with bulimia on a physiological mechanism that influences food intake. Those with purging disorder also reported greater fullness and stomach discomfort after eating compared to women with bulimia and women without eating disorders.

Keel said more research on purging disorder is needed to better understand the condition and to support its inclusion in the classification of eating disorders.

"Because we tend to only study formally defined disorders, this creates a gap between the problems people have and what we know about those problems," Keel said. "Identifying this disorder would stimulate research on its causes, treatment and prevention, which could alleviate the distress and impairment women with the illness suffer."

Keel is working on a follow-up study which will explore why some women feel the need to purge after eating what most people would regard as a normal or even small amount of food. She hopes this information will provide insight into what types of treatments may be effective for purging disorder.

"Right now there are no evidence-based treatments for purging disorder," Keel said. "It would be a disservice to women with purging disorder to assume that treatments that work for bulimia nervosa will work for purging disorder, given the differences we found between the syndromes. Additional research is crucial for advancing our understanding of purging disorder."


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Contact: Nicole Riehl
nicole-riehl@uiowa.edu
319-384-0070
University of Iowa
Source:Eurekalert

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