The eating disorders, anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and their variants, typically develop in adolescence or early adulthood, mainly in females. Despite a long history, the evidence base for effective treatments is weak and existing clinical guidelines are based on consensus views rather than strong research. Effective coordinated management of physical and psychological aspects of the disorders is crucial, but outcomes remain very variable, with adverse outcomes commonly extending into adulthood. Anorexia nervosa carries a high morbidity and occasional mortality.
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Competing interests: None.