Investigating the effectiveness, safety and tolerability of quetiapine in the treatment of anorexia nervosa in young people: a pilot study

J Psychiatr Res. 2010 Nov;44(15):1027-34. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2010.03.011. Epub 2010 May 5.


To investigate the safety and tolerability of the atypical antipsychotic quetiapine in anorexia nervosa patients, and to determine the effect of quetiapine treatment on anorexic psychopathology and other key outcome measures including weight and body image, we conducted a naturalistic, open-label, 12-week randomized controlled trial of low-dose (100-400 mg/day) quetiapine treatment versus treatment as usual in 33 anorexia nervosa patients from our Eating Disorder Clinics. To monitor the effects of treatment over the medium term, the participants were then followed up with assessment visits at 6 and 12 months after the end of the treatment phase. Low-dose quetiapine treatment resulted in both psychological and physical improvements, with minimal associated side-effects. Given the overall trend toward improvement that we observed, quetiapine appears to be a promising candidate for the treatment of anorexia nervosa. Further large-scale placebo-controlled clinical trials will be necessary to fully evaluate the benefits of quetiapine treatment for this disorder.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Anorexia Nervosa / drug therapy*
  • Anorexia Nervosa / physiopathology*
  • Anorexia Nervosa / rehabilitation
  • Antipsychotic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Clinical Protocols
  • Dibenzothiazepines / therapeutic use*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Pilot Projects
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Psychotherapy / methods
  • Quetiapine Fumarate
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult


  • Antipsychotic Agents
  • Dibenzothiazepines
  • Quetiapine Fumarate