To determine the prevalence of eating disorders in adolescent females with type 1 diabetes mellitus compared with that in their non-diabetic peers.
Cross sectional case-control led study.
Diabetes clinics and schools in three Canadian cities.
356 females aged 12-19 with type 1 diabetes and 1098 age matched non-diabetic controls.
Main outcome measure
Eating disorders meeting Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) criteria.
Eating disorders that met DSM-IV criteria were more prevalent in diabetic subjects (36, 10%) than in non-diabetic controls (49, 4%) (odds ratio 2.4, 95% confidence interval 1.5 to 3.7; P<0.001). Subthreshold eating disorders were also more common in those with diabetes (49, 14%) than in controls (84, 8%) (odds ratio 1.9, 95% confidence interval 1.3 to 2.8; P<0.001). Mean haemoglobin A1c concentration was higher in diabetic subjects with an eating disorder (9.4% (1.8)) than in those without (8.6% (1.6)), P=0.04).
DSM-IV and subthreshold eating disorders are almost twice as common in adolescent females with type 1 diabetes as in their non-diabetic peers. In diabetic subjects, eating disorders are associated with insulin omission for weight loss and impaired metabolic control.