Hospitalizations for Eating Disorders Up Over Last Decade

Increase due to secondary diagnoses; decrease in primary diagnoses of eating disorders

MONDAY, Sept. 12 (HealthDay News) -- Although hospitalizations with a principal or secondary eating-disorder diagnosis increased by 24 percent from 1999-2000 to 2008-2009, there has been a decrease in hospitalizations with a principal diagnosis of eating disorder from 2007-2008 to 2008-2009, according to a statistical brief based on data from the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP) published online Sept. 8 by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).

Yafu Zhao, and William Encinosa, Ph.D., from the AHRQ in Rockville, Md., presented a statistical brief on eating disorders over the past decade (1999-2000 to 2008-2009) using data from the HCUP on national estimates of hospitalizations for eating disorders.

The investigators found that there were 29,533 eating disorder-related hospital stays in 2008 to 2009, an increase of 24 percent from 1999 to 2000. This increase was attributable to a 40 percent rise in secondary diagnoses. The principal diagnoses decreased by 1.8 percent over the decade; between 2007-2008 to 2008-2009, hospitalizations with a principal diagnosis of eating disorder decreased by 23 percent. From 2007-2008 to 2008-2009, hospitalization for all classes of eating disorder decreased, except for pica hospitalizations, which increased 93 percent over the decade. Among patients with eating disorders, cardiac dysrhythmias and menstrual disorders decreased by 39 and 46 percent, respectively from 2007-2008 to 2008-2009. The proportion of hospitalizations for males with a principal diagnosis of an eating disorder increased from 6.5 to 10 percent.

"From 1999-2000 to 2008-2009, hospitalizations involving eating disorders increased for all the age groups," the authors write.

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