January 18, 2012

Interesting facts

Whenever I mention that I work in eating disorders I usually get, "oh, you must work with a lot of skinny females." I think people think that eating disorders just encompasses anorexia nervosa, or that patients with bulimia get as skinny as a patients with anorexia do.

While most are female and I do have a couple of patients who are seriously underweight, most of my patients are just under or at normal weight. Some are even overweight. Some are male. There are more patients with bulimia than anorexia in the program...actually, in general more people suffer from bulimia than anorexia. Anorexia has a higher mortality rate. Bulimia has more stigma attached; at the least, patients are uncomfortable admitting they have the disorder and a lot don't seek treatment.

Both disorders are often comorbid with other psychiatric disorders. Axis II abounds; so does depression and anxiety. Not all people with eating disorders also have borderline personality disorder...a lot have it. A lot more don't. I'm learning about the physical disorders that accompany eating disorders...besides the obvious ones, that is.

And for the record, an anorexic who makes themselves vomit is not a bulimic. Her disorder is called "Anorexia Nervosa, Purging Subtype." The purging subtype are those who purge via vomiting, laxatives or exercise. Non-purging subtype patients usually only restrict their intake.

Can't you tell I've been reading up on it?

Anorexia and bulimia are, as I'm learning, two entirely separate balls of wax. I purchased a couple of books that the dietitians recommended, and I still have my stack of books from the library that I'm working through...along with Russell Brand's autobiography. I had wanted to read it for quite a while, long before his marriage imploded.

The RN-BSN class continues on. This week really is all about APA and adjusting to online education. I did all of my discussion posts and responses, read all the modules, and took the required tests. Now all that's left is for me to do a little research to dredge up a couple of nursing articles and summarize them, using correct APA format of course. Next week the class should start to get more interesting.

Treadmill and machines at the Y today.

I ended up picking up an extra day at work this week. This is good, as next month it's time for me to buy a new cell phone and I am eyeing a touchscreen phone. Not the iPhone--while I would love to have one, I'm not paying the $500 that my cell phone company wants me to pay. So why not switch cell phone companies and get the iPhone for a lot less, you may ask? I like Sprint's service more than I like the iPhone.

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