Nuclear Brain Imaging in Eating Disorders
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Eating disorders have always been a rarity within the domain of psychiatry and its disorders. Eating is a basic behaviour in order to preserve and maintain one’s own physical and mental integrity. Therefore, disturbances of this life-saving habit and the often distressing clinical presentation that results have always drawn the specific attention of physicians. Within the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR, American Psychiatric Association 2000), anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa are the two major pathological entities that are outlined. Furthermore, all eating disturbances that do not meet criteria of the aforementioned pathologies are grouped separately into a single category: eating disorders not otherwise specified. Besides anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa, a section is addressed to the binge-eating disorder and another to the problem of obesity. Obesity is considered one of the principal pathologies that medicine will have to deal with in the near future. Many obese patients are probably suffering from a binge-eating disorder, but this is certainly not always objectified and is even overlooked. An overview of nuclear functional brain imaging and receptor studies, together with a discussion on the presented literature, is provided here.
KeywordsAnorexia Nervosa Eating Disorder Bulimia Nervosa Statistical Parametric Mapping Food Palatability
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