Nurse.com - Links Between PTSD, Eating Disorders Become Stronger, Require RNs To Focus On Assessment

 – September 3, 2012  –– 

Recent studies are confirming the long-suggested association between post-traumatic stress disorder and eating disorders. High rates of PTSD among people with eating disorders — such as nearly two-thirds of men with bulimia nervosa who also had PTSD, according to one study — are no surprise to PTSD expert Rachel Yehuda, PhD, professor of psychiatry and neuroscience at The Mount Sinai Medical Center and mental health patient care center director at the James J. Peters Veterans Affairs Medical Center in New York City. "It completely makes sense to me that there would be trauma-related symptoms in people who have eating disorders," Dr. Yehuda said. "Eating disorders are, in some sense, about trying to control your environment. People who have been exposed to uncontrollable, traumatic events — such as being the victim of interpersonal violence or having an accident that could have resulted in physical injury or death — may wish to try to control their environments by restricting their own food intake."
- Dr. Rachel Yehuda, Professor, Psychiatry, Neuroscience, Director of the Traumatic Stress Studies Division, Mount Sinai School of Medicine

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