Analysis of Psychological and Biological Parameters in Patients Affected by Anorexia Nervosa or Obesity

  •  Luna Carpinelli    
  •  Giulia Savarese    
  •  Valentina Pagliara    
  •  Valentina Remondelli    
  •  Giorgia Bruno    
  •  Valentina Pomposelli    


Background: Depression and anxiety disorders have a high comorbidity with eating disorders (EDs), especially anorexia nervosa (AN) and obesity. This concomitance may complicate the diagnosis and treatment of these disorders. Aim 1: to study psychological and biological factors having significant roles in anxiety and depression in ED patients. Aim 2: to evaluate differences in ED individuals having anorexia nervosa and obesity. Methods: ED patients (n° 20 with anorexia nervosa; n° 15 with obesity) were enrolled at the Eating Disorder Unit of ASL Napoli 2 (Campania, Italy) and ASL Salerno (Campania, Italy) between January 2019 and January 2020. From all subjects we collected sociodemographic data, body mass index (BMI) and blood samples routinely tested for insulin, aspartate aminotransferase (AST) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT). We administered the State Trait Anxiety Inventory Scale (STAI) and Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II) to assess the severity and chronicity of EDs and the presence of anxious and depressive symptoms. Results: We observed significant differences in the mean values of BMI in the groups of patients with AN (BMI = 16,28) or (BMI = 30,90) have clinical values that meet the diagnostic criteria while having normative values for Control group CRT (BMI = 22,1). Conclusions: The presence of several disorders at the same time can increase the severity and chronicity of EDs and make a favourable outcome of the treatment more problematic. Furthermore, the correlation between biological and psychological factors in our understanding of comorbidity in EDs patients may have implications for the evaluation and treatment of this population.

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