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Psychiatry Res. 2009 Aug 30;169(1):88-90. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2008.06.016. Epub 2009 Jul 21.

Binge eating, weight gain and psychosocial adjustment in patients with bipolar disorder.

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Department of Psychiatry, Neurobiology, Pharmacology and Biotechnologies, School of Medicine, University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.


Binge Eating (BE) is a common eating pattern in patients with Bipolar Disorder (BD). BE may confer an increased risk for obesity, morbidity, mortality and poorer quality of life. We assessed the presence of BE and its impact on body weight, body image and self-esteem in 50 patients with BD and 50 age- and gender-matched controls. The presence and severity of BE was assessed with the Binge Eating Scale (BES). The Body Image and Self-Esteem Evaluation Scale (B-WISE) was used to assess the psychosocial impact of weight gain. Body Mass Index (BMI) was calculated. Nine (18%) patients had a score >27, indicating a likely diagnosis of BE. None of the control subjects had a BES score >17. No association between BES score and the medications was found. Patients had a significantly higher BES score, significantly higher BMI, waist circumference and fasting blood glucose. Although the B-Wise score was higher in the controls, the difference was not statistically significant. This study suggests that BE is prevalent in patients with BD. The presence of BE eating is a predictor of higher BMI, indicating that the disruption of eating behavior may be a pathway to weight gain.

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