Is the screening for celiac disease useful in anorexia nervosa?

Maria Sole Basso, Valeria Zanna, Fabio Panetta, Anna Maria Caramadre, Francesca Ferretti, Simonetta Ottino, Antonella Diamanti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The main objective of the study was to prospectively assess if the prevalence of celiac disease (CD) in patients with anorexia nervosa (AN) is higher than that reported in the general population to require a regular screening program. The study was conducted at the Neuropsychiatry Unit of "Bambino Gesù" Children's Hospital in Rome from January 2005 to December 2010. All patients with diagnosis of AN according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders 4th edition criteria were screened for CD. One hundred and seventy-seven patients (33 males and 144 females) were enrolled. Only one patient was found to be affected with CD as confirmed by intestinal biopsy. The overall prevalence of CD in AN patients was 0.6 % which is similar to that observed in the general population. In conclusion, AN patients do not seem to require a regular screening program for CD. The screening for CD may be useful in selected AN patients in which the symptoms are only partially responding to psychiatric interventions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)261-263
Number of pages3
JournalEuropean Journal of Pediatrics
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2013


  • Adolescent
  • Anorexia nervosa
  • Celiac disease
  • Children

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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