Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Br J Psychiatry. 1996 Apr;168(4):500-6.

Should amenorrhoea be necessary for the diagnosis of anorexia nervosa? Evidence from a Canadian community sample.

Author information

  • 1Health Systems Research Unit, Clarke Institute of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Toronto Ontario, Canada.



This study compares the characteristics of women with anorexia nervosa with those of women who have all the diagnostic features of that disorder except amenorrhoea.


The study uses data from a large community epidemiological survey of the mental health status of household residents in Ontario, Canada. A multi-stage stratified sampling design generated a sample of 4285 females aged 15-64. DSM-III-R diagnoses were made using the Composite International Diagnostic interview.


Eighty-four out of 4285 female respondents met full or partial-syndrome criteria for anorexia nervosa. Comparison of these two groups revealed few statistically significant differences in terms of demographics, psychiatric comorbidity, family history or early experiences.


Amenorrhoea did not discriminate between women with anorexia nervosa and women with all the features except amenorrhoea across a number of relevant variables. The authors question the utility of amenorrhoea as a diagnostic criterion.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Loading ...
    Support Center