Eating disorders appear to increase the risk of death

Further research is needed to identify factors that increase the risk of death in people with eating disorders, according to the authors.There were a total of 17 272 patients in the studies, which recorded 755 deaths. The meta-analysis found that for every 1000 person-years, 5.1 deaths occurred in patients with anorexia , 1.7 deaths in patients with bulimia, and 3.3 dead patients with other eating disorders. (A meta-analysis pools the data and analyzes statistical surveys of various studies of similar problems

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While noting that some deaths may be due to other causes, the authors said that the death rate for eating disorders, especially anorexia, are higher for schizophrenia and depression.

The study is published in the July issue of the journal Archives of General Psychiatry.

British researchers analyzed 36 studies published in English between January 2006 and September 2010 which dealt with anorexia, bulimia and eating disorders not otherwise specified.

Among patients with anorexia, those in their late teens and 20 years had a higher death rate in younger patients or those in their 30s, said Jon Arcelus Leicester General Hospital and colleagues.

The standardized mortality ratio was 5.86 for anorexia, bulimia, 1.93 and 1.

92 for other eating disorders