Seed | Eating Disorder Support Service

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helping people not the eating disorder

Helpline (01482) 718130

How does medical risk arise?

  • A combination of compensatory behaviours - When someone is vomiting and taking laxatives excessively. When behaviours are excessive and binge/purge cycles are extreme.
  • Excessive exercise and low weight - If low weight and exercise are combined, all organs may be compromised and the heart will struggle to cope.
  • Blood in vomit - This can be life threatening and may indicate the oesophagus has ruptured.
  • Inadequate fluid intake - Dehydration is a key factor in any age group. If dehydrated, the kidneys may fail and other organs may be compromised.
  • Rapid weight loss - All organs may be compromised if weight loss is rapid.
  • Disrupting food rituals (eg: journey, holiday, exam). This can compromise the body's vital organs if someone is already very underweight due to an eating disorder and they go without food or drink.
  • Low potassium levels due to excessive vomiting/laxatives. Again, this may be a medical risk factor. If compensatory behaviours are out of control and someone is vomiting or using laxatives in excess then the heart may be damaged.
  • Potassium - Bloods need to be taken in the case of someone suffering from Anorexia (BET) 3.5 to 5.2 is regarded as normal. Anything below 3 creates the circumstances to admit that person to hospital.