Atypical Eating Disorders

Not everyone meets all the criteria for anorexia nervosa or bulimia but have other typical and milder features of the disorders. These are called atypical eating disorders. Binge-eating disorder is a common "atypical" eating disorder. In contrast to patients with anorexia nervosa, people with weight disorders caused by other conditions usually see themselves as too thin and don’t have a fear of fatness.

An eating disorder can also be the result or a secondary complication of other medical and psychiatric conditions including:

  • Major depressive illness
  • Schizophrenia
  • Dementia syndromes such as Alzheimer's disease
  • Panic disorder
  • Hyperthyroidism
  • Insulin-dependent (type I) diabetes mellitus
  • Malabsorption
  • Tuberculosis
  • Intestinal parasites
  • Tumors of the hypothalamus
  • Decreased consciousness
  • Cocaine, amphetamine or drug abuse