Lipid levels in anorexia nervosa patients
Marina Nikolic-Djurovic, Sandra Pekic, Dragana Miljic, Mirjana Doknic, Milan Petakov, Marko Stojanovic & Vera Popovic
Anorexia nervosa (AN) is a chronic disorder characterized of profound reduction in body weight and amenorrhoea. Despite emaciation and avoidance of cholesterol-rich food, hypercholesterolaemia is a common feature. The aim of the study was to investigate the changes in lipid metabolism with weight gain in 17 severe AN patients aged 23.8±1.6 years (DSM-IV criteria). They were compared with age-matched cohorts of 11 healthy controls (22.5±3.9 years) before and after weight gain. For a 12 weeks period, AN patients were on a special hypercaloric diet 2500 cal/24 h. After overnight fast serum cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol (cholesterol-oxidasa method) and triglyceride (glycerol 3 phosphat oxidasa method) levels were measured. Relevant parameters are presented as mean±S.E.M. Although AN patients increased body weight (from 42.3±1.6 to 53.3±0.9 kg, P<0.05) and BMI (from 14.3±0.4 to 19.5±0.4 kg/m2, P<0.05), no significant decrease (although a slight fall) were found in serum cholesterol levels (from 5.9±0.6 to 5.5±0.3 mmol/l), HDL-cholesterol (from 1.8±0.4 to 1.5±0.7 mmol/l), LDL-cholesterol (from 4.1±0.9 to 4.0±1.2 mmol/l) and triglyceride (from 1.0±0.9 to 1.2±0.5 mmol/l). AN patients had lower body weight and BMI at the beginning of the study compared with healthy females (42.3±1.6 vs 56.8±2.9 kg, 14.3±0.4 vs 21.7±2.9 kg/m2, P<0.01). After weight gain, there were no significant differences in body weight and BMI between AN patients and controls (53.3±0.9 vs 56.8±2.9 kg, 19.5±0.4 vs 21.7±2.9 kg/m2, P>0.05). There were no significant differences in serum lipid levels between AN patients (before and after weight gain) and healthy controls (P>0.05).
Conclusion: Our results favour relationship between body weight and cholesterol value, as it is showed that cholesterol levels fall after increase in body weight. So it is considered that patients with AN and hypercholesterolemia do not need treatment with lipid-lowering drugs.