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Bulimia nervosa is a common eating disorder that predominantly affects young women. There are three main models of purging in bulimia. Resulting medical complications are related to the particular mode and frequency of purging. Commonly, there are oral and gastrointestinal complications along with serious electrolyte and endocrine complications. The majority of the medical complications of bulimia nervosa are treatable if diagnosed in a timely fashion. Some of these patients require inpatient hospitalization, and others can be managed along a continuum of outpatient care. The American Psychiatric Association has comprehensive treatment guidelines for the management of bulimia. Primary care physicians and gynecologists need to be familiar with this disorder and its medical implications.




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This is a copy of an article published in the Journal of Women's Health ©2004] Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.; Journal of Women's Health is available online at:

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Philip S. Mehler, Cynthia Crews, and Kenneth Weiner. Journal of Women's Health. July/August 2004, 13(6): 668-675. doi:10.1089/jwh.2004.13.668.

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