Anorexia nervosa (AN) is a common eating disorder with the highest mortality rate of all psychiatric illnesses. It's a myth that the effects of eating disorders aren't as dangerous as the effects of other mental health conditions. Unfortunately, health complications related to eating disorders can be life-threatening. Examples of deaths from medical causes include acute alcohol poisoning, cardiorespiratory problems, problems with the liver and other major organs, and pneumonia.
If you live with an eating disorder, talk to your primary care doctor or a mental health professional, such as a therapist. The information contained in or provided through this service is intended for the general understanding and education of the consumer and not as a substitute for medical or psychological advice, diagnosis or treatment. Long-term costs of a disease may be higher when the peak age of incidence is relatively low and chronicity is high, such as in eating disorders. With early intervention and treatment, people with anorexia can lead a normal and healthy life.
The causes of death for patients were not always available, and it is likely that many of the people who died did not have AN or an eating disorder at the time of death. Support systems, access to care and reduction of triggers related to anorexia nervosa are also vital for a patient to progress rather than fall into life-threatening situations and complications. Anorexia can also create problems with how well your brain works, affecting how quickly you can think and react, how well you concentrate, and how well you can balance your mood. Future and robust studies should inform physicians about the predictive factors associated with the mortality rate in patients with EDNOS and BN; until now, late presentation of NA seems to be the only clear predictor of death among these disorders.
A meta-analysis found that the standardized mortality rate was 1.92 for the diagnosis of another specified eating and eating disorder, formerly known as eating disorder not otherwise specified (EDNOS). If you are dealing with an eating disorder and are not being treated, contact a health professional. Patients may progress periodically during treatment, but often relapse into periods of malnutrition, with its destructive and life-threatening complications. These findings suggest that treatment outcomes for adolescents with anorexia may be more successful if given within the first three years of the condition.