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Cincinnati Children’s and Lindner Center of HOPE Raise Eating Disorders Awareness


Thursday, February 16, 2012Recently, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Lindner Center of HOPE, and Cincinnati Psychotherapy Institute hosted the Evening with an Eating Disorders Expert Panel in honor of Eating Disorders Awareness Month. The purpose of the panel was for eating disorders experts to provide answers for family, friends, coaches, and other care givers about the mental and physical health struggles involved with eating disorders.

Cincinnati Children’s and Lindner Center of HOPE also collaborate to stabilize and strengthen mental health care services for children and teens. A 16-bed inpatient unit serves children facing a milieu of mental health concerns-while offering an eating disorders specialty track. The Partial Hospitalization program is ideal for those patients stepping down from intensive treatment or as an alternative to inpatient hospitalization. The treatment program combines psychotherapy, nutritional services, psychiatric management and family support to form a complete treatment plan.

“Not only are eating disorders an increasing public health concern, but they represent the highest rate of mortality compared with other mental illnesses,” says Dr. Anne O’Melia, Medical Director of Eating Disorders at the Lindner Center of HOPE, “In addition, these illnesses such as Bulimia Nervosa, Anorexia Nervosa, Compulsive Exercising, and Binge Eating Disorder are challenging to identify and treat.”

The good news is research shows that eating disorders can be effectively treated in psychiatric, inpatient settings and in partial hospital programs, with particular success when these disorders are addressed in the presence of other mental health diagnoses.

In order to continue to raise awareness and to help protect a loved one who may be suffering from an eating disorder, Lindner Center of HOPE and Cincinnati Children’s offer these warning signs and symptoms:

Immediate Symptoms and Warning Signs
-A relentless perusal to lose weight
-Extreme restrictions in eating habits
-Intense fear of weight gain
-Lack of menstruation in women and girls
-Distorted body image and self-esteem purely focused on weight
-Extreme thinness
-Inflamed sore throat
-Swollen glands in the neck and jaw
-Worn tooth enamel and tooth decay as a result of exposure to stomach acid
-Dehydration
-Compulsive eating, binge eating, or inability to stop eating
-Compulsively arranging food and/or cutting into tiny pieces
-Abuse of laxatives or diet pills
-Excessive exercising
-Avoid eating in social situations that involve food
-Frequently going to the restroom shortly after meals

Long Term Symptoms
-Thinning of bones
-Dry and yellowish skin
-Brittle hair and nails
-Damage to heart structure and function
-Low blood pressure, slow breathing and pulse
-Brain damage
-Multi-organ failure
-Infertility
-Lethargy and sluggishness
-Drop in internal body temperature

For more information on eating disorders and how to help raise awareness visit the National Institute of Mental Health at www.nimh.nih.gov or visit Lindner Center of HOPE at www.lindnercenterofhope.org or call 513-636-4124.

About Cincinnati Children’s
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center ranks third in the nation among all Honor Roll hospitals in U.S. News and World Report's 2011 Best Children's Hospitals ranking. It is ranked #1 for gastroenterology and in the top 10 for all pediatric specialties - a distinction shared by only two other pediatric hospitals in the United States. Cincinnati Children's is one of the top two recipients of pediatric research grants from the National Institutes of Health. It is internationally recognized for improving child health and transforming delivery of care through fully integrated, globally recognized research, education and innovation. Additional information can be found at www.cincinnatichildrens.org.

Contact Information

Danielle Jones, 513-636-9473, danielle.jones@cchmc.org