Mental health articles

OF mental health care and mentally ill

case study on bulimia nervosa

bulimia nervosa

Jane is 21 years old. She is just completing her three years at university, whereshe is studying fashion and design. She is expected to achieve a first-classhonours degree and is concerned that her work will not be good enough toachieve this grade.

She recently became concerned regarding her weight due to commentsmade to her by her family who said she looked ‘just like her father’, whois overweight. On confiding with her friend that she felt she had gainedweight, her friend agreed with her and recommended a diet. Her sister recentlydisclosed to Jane that she recalled that both her and Jane were ‘touched up’by their uncle (her father’s brother).Jane’s diet begins well but she finds it difficult to cope with the overwhelminghunger pangs and thinks about food and the calorific content offood all day. One day, she finds herself in the supermarket filling up a trolleywith bread, cakes and sweets that she devours quickly on her own in herstudent accommodation.

After eating all the food she purchased, she feels notonly physically sick but has a sense of revulsion about her behaviour. To easethe sense of fullness and to avoid gaining weight, she makes herself vomit.These binges begin to occur more and more frequently, especially when sheis at home visiting her family. Jane’s mood is noticeably low and eventuallyafter much encouragement she discloses her feelings and behaviour to hersister.

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