PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — It’s the deadliest psychiatric disorder and treatment works best if started early.
Anorexia is a refusal to maintain a healthy weight and it puts people at a 12-times greater risk of death than others the same age, according to Dr. Stacey Cahn, associate professor of psychology at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine.READ MORE: Gas Prices Rise In New Jersey, Around Nation Amid High Crude Prices
“A lot of psychiatric disorders are associated with a lot of emotional suffering,” Cahn says. “Anorexia is associated with extreme medical risks, it can cause osteoporosis, lower heart rate, it can lead to death.”READ MORE: Philadelphia Weather: Stormy Evening Brings In Seasonal Temperatures For Early Next Week
She says family members must step in quickly when symptoms arise.
“Significant weight loss that isn’t explained by a medical condition,” Cahn says, “or in younger children a failure to gain weight and to grow, a pre-occupation with food or weight and showing up to meals having quote just eaten.MORE NEWS: Inaugural Penn Relays 5K Underway At Penn Park
There are no drugs for treatment of anorexia, only therapy.