Bulimia nervosa: Medical complications

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Learn how bulimia nervosa causes malnutrition and disrupts the body's usual functions.

Key points

  • Bulimia nervosa can result in a slow or irregular heart beat as well as very low blood pressure.
  • Over time, lack of vitamins and minerals can cause bones to become weaker, resulting in osteoporosis or fractures, and can cause hair to fall out.
  • Frequent vomiting can result in acid reflux and tooth decay from stomach acid eroding tooth enamel.
  • Purging the body of proper nutrients can also hinder brain function, resulting in difficulties with concentration and mood swings.
  • When the body is purged of food containing fats, it may not produce normal levels of hormones, which can have long-lasting effects on growth, puberty and menstrual cycles.
Last updated: September 12th 2023