Olanzapine use as an adjunctive treatment for hospitalized children with anorexia nervosa: case reports

Int J Eat Disord. 2003 Jan;33(1):98-103. doi: 10.1002/eat.10115.


Objective: A recent case report suggested that olanzapine resulted in improved weight gain and maintenance, as well as decreased anxiety and agitation, for two hospitalized inpatients with anorexia nervosa (AN). However, a subsequent larger case study did not show a relationship between the use of olanzapine and rate of weight gain among a primarily adult population. The aim of this case report was to clinically examine the therapeutic benefit and tolerability of olanzapine as an adjunctive treatment for four children with AN in a pediatric inpatient setting.

Results: Olanzapine use was associated with considerable weight gain and maintenance, with an average rate of weight gain during hospitalization of 0.99 kg per week. In addition to weight gain, olanzapine was associated with a clinically notable decrease in levels of agitation and premeal anxiety and almost immediate improvement in sleep, general functioning, and overall compliance with treatment. Olanzapine was also well tolerated in these young patients.

Discussion: These case report findings warrant more controlled research, including randomized controlled studies, to better determine the therapeutic benefits and safety of olanzapine use in children with AN.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Anorexia Nervosa / drug therapy*
  • Anorexia Nervosa / psychology
  • Anorexia Nervosa / rehabilitation*
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Body Mass Index
  • Child
  • Female
  • Hospitalization
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Olanzapine
  • Pirenzepine / analogs & derivatives*
  • Pirenzepine / therapeutic use*
  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors / therapeutic use*


  • Serotonin Uptake Inhibitors
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Pirenzepine
  • Olanzapine