Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Women with anorexia nervosa more likely to have unplanned pregnancies, study finds

Date:
October 30, 2010
Source:
University of North Carolina School of Medicine
Summary:
A new study has found that women with anorexia nervosa are much more likely to have both unplanned pregnancies and induced abortions than women who don't have the serious eating disorder.

A new study by University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Norwegian researchers has found that women with anorexia nervosa are much more likely to have both unplanned pregnancies and induced abortions than women who don't have the serious eating disorder.

These results may be driven by a mistaken belief among women with anorexia that they can't get pregnant because they are either not having menstrual periods at all or are having irregular periods, said Cynthia M. Bulik, PhD, the study's lead author and director of the UNC Eating Disorders Program.

"Anorexia is not a good contraceptive," Bulik said. "Just because you're not menstruating, or because you're menstruating irregularly, doesn't mean you're not at risk for becoming pregnant."

Physicians and other health care providers need to be aware of this as well, Bulik said. Doctors who treat women and adolescent girls, in particular, "need to make sure that they have the conversation about sexuality and contraception as clearly with patients with anorexia as they do with all other girls and women." In addition, providers who take care of pregnant women need to know when their patients have an eating disorder in order to provide appropriate care. Screening for eating disorders during prenatal visits would be an excellent first step, Bulik said.

In the study, published in the November 2010 issue of the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology, Bulik and study co-authors analyzed data collected from 62,060 women as part of the Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort Study. There were 62 women in this sample who reported having anorexia nervosa.

The differences between women with anorexia and women with no eating disorder were striking. The average age of the mothers at delivery was 26.2 years in women with anorexia, compared with 29.9 years in the referent group of women without eating disorders. Fifty percent of women with anorexia reported unplanned pregnancies, compared with 18.9 percent, while 24.2 percent of women with anorexia reported having induced abortions in the past, compared to 14.6 percent.

Co-authors of the study from UNC are Elizabeth R. Hoffman, an MD, PhD student, and biostatistician Ann Von Holle, MS. Co-authors from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health are Leila Torgersen, PhD, Camilla Stoltenberg, MD, drMed; and Ted Reichborn-Kjennerud, MD, drMed.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of North Carolina School of Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Cynthia M. Bulik, Elizabeth R. Hoffman, Ann Von Holle, Leila Torgersen, Camilla Stoltenberg, Ted Reichborn-Kjennerud. Unplanned Pregnancy in Women With Anorexia Nervosa. Obstetrics & Gynecology, 2010; 116 (5): 1136 DOI: 10.1097/AOG.0b013e3181f7efdc

Cite This Page:

University of North Carolina School of Medicine. "Women with anorexia nervosa more likely to have unplanned pregnancies, study finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 October 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101029122213.htm>.
University of North Carolina School of Medicine. (2010, October 30). Women with anorexia nervosa more likely to have unplanned pregnancies, study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101029122213.htm
University of North Carolina School of Medicine. "Women with anorexia nervosa more likely to have unplanned pregnancies, study finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101029122213.htm (accessed September 1, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Monday, September 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Get on Your Bike! London Cycling Popularity Soars Despite Danger

Get on Your Bike! London Cycling Popularity Soars Despite Danger

AFP (Sep. 1, 2014) Wedged between buses, lorries and cars, cycling in London isn't for the faint hearted. Nevertheless the number of people choosing to bike in the British capital has doubled over the past 15 years. Duration: 02:27 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) A new study suggests 100 percent of adult humans (those over 18 years of age) have Demodex mites living in their faces. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

AFP (Aug. 30, 2014) Authorities in Liberia try to stem the spread of the Ebola epidemic by raising awareness and setting up sanitation units for people to wash their hands. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
California Passes 'yes-Means-Yes' Campus Sexual Assault Bill

California Passes 'yes-Means-Yes' Campus Sexual Assault Bill

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 30, 2014) California lawmakers pass a bill requiring universities to adopt "affirmative consent" language in their definitions of consensual sex, part of a nationwide drive to curb sexual assault on campuses. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins