Prescription diuretic abuse in patients with bulimia nervosa

Claire Pomeroy, J. E. Mitchell, H. C. Seim, M. Seppala

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Bulimia nervosa, a common eating disorder usually characterized by binge eating and self-induced vomiting, may also involve abuse of prescription diuretics. This article describes four patients who abused prescription diuretics in large quantities (up to 2 g/d of furosemide) for extended periods of time. Physical examination and laboratory values provided few clues to the diagnosis of bulimia nervosa. Other eating-related behaviors previously linked to bulimia nervosa - including abuse of diet pills, illicit amphetamines, and laxatives, as well as withholding of insulin in one diabetic patient - were present in these cases. Usually the patients' primary physicians were not aware of these problems. Physicians should be aware that patients requesting prescription diuretics may have bulimia nervosa.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)493-496
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Family Practice
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1988
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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