We evaluated the significance of purging behavior in the diagnosis of eating disorders through an objective assessment of eating disorder psychopathology including personality disorders.
Subjects were 42 consecutive outpatients with eating disorders who visited the Outpatient Psychiatric Clinic at Tokai University Hospital (Kanagawa, Japan). Diagnosis of eating and personality disorders was established using the modified Structured Clinical Interviews for DSM-III-R and DSM-III-R-Axis II. Eating disorder symptoms and psychopathology were assessed with the Eating Disorder Examination, Eating Disorder Inventory 2, Beck Depression Inventory, and Leyton Obsessional Inventory Results were compared between purgers and non-purgers.
Purgers had severe borderline or avoidant personality disorder, mixed personality disorder, eating attitude, depressive symptoms, and obsessive symptoms.
Purging behavior in eating disorder patients is associated with personality disorders, depression, and obsessive symptoms. Assessment of this behavior is critical in the diagnosis and treatment of eating disorders.