The DST and TRH Test in Bulimia Nervosa Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • Abnormal neuroendocrine responses have been found in depression and eating disorders. It remains unclear whether these reflect an underlying shared biology or epiphenomena. To evaluate this further, we conducted the 1 mg DST and the TSH response to 500 μg i.v. TRH in normal-weight bulimics and controls. Bulimics (n = 18) demonstrated significantly more DST non-suppression (45%) than controls (18%; n = 20). In the bulimic group, non-suppressors were significantly thinner than suppressors, but did not differ from them on any measure of depression. Bulimics (n = 19) and controls (n = 12) responded similarly without blunting on the TSH response to TRH. These data suggest that DST non-suppression may be related to non-specific variables such as weight. Bulimics do not demonstrate TSH blunting as found in some depressed patients. These tests do not support evidence for a biological link between these disorders.

publication date

  • January 1989