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J Subst Abuse. 1992;4(1):69-90.

Abuse of drugs associated with eating disorders.

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  • 1University of Canterbury Christchurch, New Zealand.


Concomitant bulimia nervosa and drug abuse are common in women. Drugs used by this group include diuretics, emetics, laxatives, and diet pills, as well as alcohol, cigarettes, and illicit street drugs. This paper applies principles from behavioral pharmacology to the problem of drug use by women with bulimia nervosa. The prevalence of use, primary effects, toxicity, detection, tolerance, withdrawal, and effects on appetite and weight are discussed for drugs used by bulimic women to reduce appetite or weight or to induce purging (e.g., diuretics, emetics, laxatives, and diet aids). Alternatives in the diagnosis and treatment of drug use in women with eating disorders are discussed.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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