anorexia nervosa

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anorexia nervosa:

see eating disorderseating disorders,
in psychology, disorders in eating patterns that comprise four categories: anorexia nervosa, bulimia, rumination disorder, and pica. Anorexia nervosa is characterized by self-starvation to avoid obesity.
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anorexia nervosa

a disorder of eating behaviour. This is a psychological disturbance found predominantly in young women which leads them to perceive themselves as obese and to attempt to become slim. Their disordered eating behaviour is most usually expressed as a refusal to eat sufficiently, so that weight is lost, and in conjunction there may be episodes of bulimia, or bingeing, followed by the use of purgatives and self-induced vomiting. As weight loss continues menstruation ceases, and, though at first energy appears to increase, eventually the physical condition may become life-threatening.

There has been much interest in and research into this condition since the early 1970s. Among sociologists, anorexia is considered a ‘pathology of self-identity’, arising from the idealization of slimness (especially for women) in contemporary societies. Disordered family relationships have been suggested as a precipitating factor, the effort of the patient to return to being a child (immature figure, non-menstruating) suggesting an unwillingness to become an adult. It is also proposed that a genetic predisposition may underlie the problem. Current treatment is becoming more oriented to medical intervention to correct the biochemical imbalance, but social and psychiatric treatments are still widely used. When a patient is severely ill, needing hospitalization, the usual treatment has been behavioural, which can be effective in inducing weight gain. See BEHAVIOUR THERAPY. Psychotherapy is used to assist the patient achieve a realistic perception of her/his situation, and SELF-HELP GROUPS are found useful by many sufferers who may need longterm support. See also BODY.

anorexia nervosa

[‚an·ə′rek·sē·ə nər′vō·sə]
(psychology)
A disorder in which dramatic reduction in caloric intake consequent to excessive dieting leads to significant physiological, emotional, psychological, and behavioral disturbances.
References in periodicals archive ?
In reality, I was underweight and malnourished, but I had made myself think that I wasn't thin enough to be an anorexic, and anorexics weren't as heavy as me.
The psychoanalytic literature suggests that the anorexic struggles with a complicated, poorly differentiated, push-pull enmeshment between self and intrusive mother/object (Bruch, 1973; 1978; Farrell & Magagna, 2003; Lane, 2002).
There are issues about the impact and lack of funding for treatment of anorexic sufferers here.
Similar anti-anorexia measures in 2008 failed to get final approval in the French legislature, and this effort has also met resistance, including from health professionals who fear it will further stigmatize anorexic youth and make it harder to diagnose and treat them.
Anorexic women struggle between two opposing cultural norms: the slender female body type and embracing weight gain during pregnancy
For decades, scientists have known that anorexic children behave a little differently.
Laura Ramsey, 26, is a recovered anorexic who knows all too well the power these websites can have.
Some remain anorexic for years, and others keep gaining and losing weight.
Here, the intimacy anorexic declares, in his or her mind, what you are thinking or feeling and guesses your motives (they always are negative interpretations).
None of the anorexic or control patients had evidence of any visual failure; visual acuity for all remained normal.
Summary: The model has been accused of encouraging teenagers to become anorexic.