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Obese teenagers who lose weight are at risk of developing eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa. In a recent Pediatrics article, Mayo Clinic researchers imply eating disorders among these patients are also not being adequately detected because the weight loss is seen as positive by providers and family members.
Eating disorders expert in the Mayo Clinic Children’s Center and lead author of the study Leslie Sim, Ph.D., L.P., says, “Given research that suggests early intervention promotes best chance of recovery, it is imperative that these children and adolescents’ eating disorder symptoms are identified and intervention is offered before the disease progresses."
In the article, Mayo Clinic researchers argue that formerly overweight adolescents tend to have more medical complications and take longer to be identified than kids who are in a normal weight range before developing their eating disorders.
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Journalists: Sound bites with Dr. Sim are available in the downloads