Encyclopedia of Clinical Neuropsychology

2018 Edition
| Editors: Jeffrey S. Kreutzer, John DeLuca, Bruce Caplan

Bulimia Nervosa

  • Kristin M. GrahamEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-57111-9_9188




Bulimia nervosa is defined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (5th ed.; DSM-5; American Psychiatric Association 2013) as a feeding and eating disorder characterized by episodes of binge eating that occur during a discrete period of time and are accompanied by a sense of lack of control. Behaviors to expel food eaten (e.g., self-induced vomiting, laxatives) and/or restrictive caloric intake behaviors typically follow binge eating episodes. Additionally, individuals engage in inappropriate behaviors to prevent weight gain, and self-evaluation is disproportionately influenced by body shape and weight. Individuals typically experience fear of gaining weight and a desire to lose weight, as is common in anorexia nervosa.


The disorder is classified with the Feeding and Eating Disorders in DSM-5.

Current Knowledge

Development and Course

The development of bulimia nervosa is common during adolescence and young adulthood and is...

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References and Readings

  1. American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (DSM-5®). Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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  4. McGilley, B. M., & Pryor, T. L. (1998). Assessment and treatment of bulimia nervosa. American Family Physician, 57(11), 2743–2750.PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  5. Wonderlich, S. A., Peterson, C. B., Crosby, R. D., Smith, T. L., Klein, M. H., Mitchell, J. E., & Crow, S. J. (2014). A randomized controlled comparison of integrative cognitive-affective therapy (ICAT) and enhanced cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT-E) for bulimia nervosa. Psychological Medicine, 44(03), 543–553.PubMedCrossRefPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Physical Medicine and RehabilitationVirginia Commonwealth UniversityRichmondUSA