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Gynecologic Care for Adolescents and Young Women With Eating Disorders

ACOG Committee Opinion Summary, Number 740

Author Information
doi: 10.1097/AOG.0000000000002653
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Recommendations and Conclusions

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists makes the following recommendations and conclusions:

  • Adult and adolescent females with eating disorders may present with gynecologic concerns or symptoms, including irregular menses, amenorrhea, pelvic pain, atrophic vaginitis, and breast atrophy.
  • Although formal diagnosis and treatment of eating disorders in adolescents are complex and outside the scope of practice for most general obstetrician–gynecologists, it is important that health care providers be comfortable with recognizing and screening at-risk patients.
  • Recognizing risk factors for eating disorders can help to identify patients who should be further evaluated.
  • Because eating disorders are complex and affect psychologic and physical health, a multidisciplinary approach is imperative.
  • Although obstetrician–gynecologists are not expected to treat eating disorders, they should be familiar with the criteria that warrant immediate hospitalization for medical stabilization.
  • Weight restoration is the best treatment for low bone mineral density (BMD) caused by disordered eating.
  • Further research is needed to define best practices, including management of low BMD, menstrual irregularities, and pregnancy prevention.
  • The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends against the use of combined oral contraceptive pills (OCPs) solely for the treatment of amenorrhea associated with eating disorders.

Copyright June 2018 by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, posted on the Internet, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without prior written permission from the publisher.

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Official Citation

Gynecologic care for adolescents and young women with eating disorders. ACOG Committee Opinion No. 740. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Obstet Gynecol 2018;131:e205–13.

© 2018 by American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Published by Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.