Anorexia nervosa, bulimia, and pregnancy

Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1987 Nov;157(5):1194-8. doi: 10.1016/s0002-9378(87)80293-4.


Of 74 women previously treated for anorexia nervosa or bulimia, 15 had conceived 23 pregnancies when assessed at follow-up. The status of the eating disorder, course of pregnancy and delivery, infant health, and postpartum adjustment are described. Women in whom eating disorders were in remission at conception had greater maternal weight gain and babies with higher birth weights and 5-minute Apgar scores than women who conceived while they still had symptoms of restricting anorexia nervosa or bulimia. Women who had symptoms of eating disorders at conception also had continuance or worsening of these symptoms during pregnancy and the postpartum year. We recommend delay of pregnancy until the eating disorder is truly in remission.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Adult
  • Anorexia Nervosa / physiopathology*
  • Apgar Score
  • Birth Weight
  • Body Weight
  • Bulimia / physiopathology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Postpartum Period / psychology
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / physiopathology
  • Pregnancy Complications / psychology*