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What is Bulimia Nervosa?

Bulimia nervosa, or binge eating disorder, is a psychiatric condition marked by recurring periods of bingeing and purging. It is common in both males and females but occurs more often in teenage girls. The person may want to binge eat (eating aggressively large amounts of food in a short period of time) at any time, with a sense of loss of control over eating, followed by a sudden shamefulness; hence, the person can show compensatory behaviours of purging, such as self-induced vomiting, using weight loss medications, taking laxatives and diuretics, over-exercising, and fasting. Occasionally, the condition can also be life-threatening.

What are its signs and symptoms?

The important signs and symptoms include

  • Uncontrolled eating, not wishing to eat in public
  • Extremely critical about body shape and weight
  • Mood swings, anxiety, and depression
  • Frequent bathroom visits after a meal
  • Smell of vomiting
  • Excessive exercise
  • Use of laxative, diuretics, and weight loss pills
  • Fluctuations in weight, but the person usually maintains a normal weight. Often physicians and some persons assume that bulimia persons are underweight, and this can cause bulimia to go undetected or it can be missed for a longer period
  • Swollen hands and feet
  • Scars or sores on the knuckles
  • Discolouration of teeth and damage to gums
  • Reluctance in food and strict dieting

What are its main causes?

The exact cause of bulimia remains unknown. Some contributing factors may be genetic, family history, concerns about body weight and body shape, low self-esteem, obsessive personality or perfectionist character, anxiety, and depression.

How is it diagnosed and treated?

Based on the above signs and symptoms, the physician can diagnose bulimia by

  • Questioning eating habits, weight loss methods, and physical symptoms
  • Primary tests, including blood, urine, and electrocardiogram to assess the heart function
  • Diagnostic and statistical model-5 (DSM-5) tool to confirm the diagnosis

A team of professionals, including a psychiatrist, physician, and dietician, is required for the treatment of bulimia. Treatment may start with psychological counselling, but depending upon the severity of symptoms, medications, such as anti-depressants, can be prescribed. Fluoxetine is an antidepressant approved by the FDA. Other forms of treatment include psychotherapy with cognitive behavioural therapy, family-based treatment, interpersonal psychotherapy, nutrition education, and hospitalisation.

Eating regularly and not restricting the diet is important for overcoming bulimia. Some help groups are available, which can be joined as per the patient’s choice. Although the treatment takes time, bulimia can be completely cured.

  1. Medicines for Bulimia Nervosa
  2. Doctors for Bulimia Nervosa
Dr. Saurabh Mehrotra

Dr. Saurabh Mehrotra


Dr. Om Prakash L

Dr. Om Prakash L


Dr. Anil Kumar

Dr. Anil Kumar


Medicines for Bulimia Nervosa

Medicines listed below are available for Bulimia Nervosa. Please note that you should not take any medicines without doctor consultation. Taking any medicine without doctor's consultation can cause serious problems.

Medicine NamePack SizePrice (Rs.)
Oleanz PlusOleanz Plus 20 Mg/5 Mg Tablet72
Olipar PlusOlipar Plus 20 Mg/5 Mg Tablet60
Oltha PlusOltha Plus Tablet53
Fludep (Cipla)Fludep 20 Mg Capsule28
Flugen (La Pharma)Flugen 20 Mg Capsule32
Flumusa ForteFlumusa Forte 0.25 Mg Tablet33
FlunamFlunam 20 Mg Capsule0
FlunatFlunat 10 Mg Capsule26
FluonFluon Cream28
Fluon (Parry)Fluon Lotion32
FluoxFluox 20 Mg Capsule4
FluoxetFluoxet 10 Mg Tablet14
FlutinFlutin 20 Mg Capsule0
FlutineFlutine 10 Mg Capsule28
FlutopFlutop 10 Mg Capsule25
Flux (Aarpik)Flux 20 Mg Capsule27
FluxaterFluxater 20 Mg Capsule20
FluzeFluze 20 Mg Capsule30
F TinF Tin 10 Mg Tablet23
HidacHidac 20 Mg Capsule111
InadayInaday 20 Mg Capsule28

Do you or anyone in your family have this disease? Please do a survey and help others


  1. National Eating Disorders Association. Bulimia Nervosa. New York, United States. [internet].
  2. Help Guide international. Bulimia Nervosa. Santa Monica, California. [internet].
  3. National Health Service [Internet]. UK; Bulimia
  4. American Academy of Family Physicians [Internet]. Leawood (KS); Assessment and Treatment of Bulimia Nervosa
  5. American Academy of Family Physicians [Internet]. Leawood (KS); Treatment of Bulimia Nervosa
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