Australian Family Physician
Australian Family Physician


Volume 40, Issue 3, March 2011

Eating disorders Early identification in general practice

Michele Yeo Elizabeth Hughes
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Eating disorders are complex illnesses that impact on both the physical and socio-emotional health of young people, and contribute to significant morbidity. Dieting behaviours and body image concerns are common in adolescence and it can be challenging to identify those at the extreme end of this spectrum who are at risk of an eating disorder.
This article presents a brief overview of eating disorders, with a focus on early identification in general practice. An approach to diagnosis is outlined together with an update on evidence based treatments.
General practitioners are uniquely placed to recognise early onset eating disorders, offer intervention and help coordinate and monitor treatment. Early detection and management may contribute to better outcomes.

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