Full-syndrome, partial-syndrome and subclinical eating disorders: an epidemiological study of female students in Southern Italy

Acta Psychiatr Scand. 1998 Aug;98(2):112-5. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0447.1998.tb10051.x.


We screened a sample of 919 female students, aged 13-19 years, by means of the EDI 2 and GHQ-28 questionnaires. Those students identified as being at risk for an eating disorder (281 subjects) underwent a psychiatric interview. We found 2 cases of full-syndrome anorexia nervosa (0.2%), 21 cases of full-syndrome bulimia nervosa (2.3%) and 2 cases of full-syndrome binge-eating disorder (0.2%). Moreover, 35 girls (3.8%) met the criteria for partial-syndrome and 98 girls (10.7%) fulfilled the criteria for subclinical eating disorders. Subjects with partial-syndrome and subclinical eating disorders had higher scores than those with no diagnosis, but lower scores than students with full-syndrome eating disorders, on both the EDI 2 and GHQ-28 questionnaires. A follow-up of subjects with partial-syndrome and subclinical eating disorders is now in progress.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Anorexia Nervosa / epidemiology
  • Behavioral Symptoms / epidemiology
  • Bulimia / epidemiology
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders / classification
  • Feeding and Eating Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Italy / epidemiology
  • Prevalence
  • Sampling Studies
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Students / statistics & numerical data
  • Urban Health / statistics & numerical data