The dexamethasone suppression test in bulimia: nonsuppression associated with depression and suboptimal weight.
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This study was designed to assess the extent to which DST nonsuppression in bulimic women could be predicted by the incidence of major depression in the patient and her family and by other factors known to affect DST results, such as suboptimal weight. The DST was administered to 33 women who met DSM-III criteria for bulimia. Subjects were given a complete psychiatric and psychological assessment, including the National Institute of Mental Health Diagnostic Interview Schedule, a personal and family medical history questionnaire, the Hopkins SCL-90, and the Eating Disorders Inventory. Ideal weight was determined with Metropolitan Life tables. The rate of DST nonsuppression was 58%. Nonsuppression was more frequent among women who suffered from major depression and those who maintained a suboptimal weight. Depression and suboptimal weight were unrelated and thus appear to contribute independently to the high rate of DST abnormalities commonly seen in bulimia.
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