Season of birth in females with anorexia nervosa in Northeast Scotland

John Eagles, J. E. Andrew, E. A. Easton, H. R. Millar, M. I. Johnston

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    33 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Objective: To determine whether patients with anorexia nervosa exhibit an abnormal pattern in their season of birth. Method: Case records of female patients presenting to secondary services in Northeast Scotland from 1965 to 1997 who received a clinical diagnosis of anorexia nervosa were examined. The months of birth of the 446 anorexic patients with a confirmed diagnosis were compared with 5,766 female control subjects born locally in 1951, 1961, 1971, and 1981. Results: Patients with anorexia nervosa had an excess of births in the first 6 months of the year (p = .013). The greatest excess was from March to June. Discussion: This provides further evidence that birth dates of anorexics peak in the late spring and early summer. There are parallels with the epidemiology of schizophrenia. The evidence suggests that a seasonally fluctuating factor, most plausibly an intrauterine effect of common infectious agents during the winter months, is of etiological significance. (C) 2001 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)167-175
    Number of pages8
    JournalInternational Journal of Eating Disorders
    Volume30
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2001

    Keywords

    • anorexia nervosa
    • seasons
    • birth rate
    • schizophrenia
    • epidemiology
    • DUTCH-HUNGER-WINTER
    • PRENATAL EXPOSURE
    • EATING DISORDERS
    • BRAIN HYPOMETABOLISM
    • ADULT SCHIZOPHRENIA
    • AFFECTIVE PSYCHOSIS
    • BIPOLAR DISORDER
    • BULIMIA-NERVOSA
    • INFLUENZA
    • RISK

    Cite this

    Eagles, J., Andrew, J. E., Easton, E. A., Millar, H. R., & Johnston, M. I. (2001). Season of birth in females with anorexia nervosa in Northeast Scotland. International Journal of Eating Disorders, 30(2), 167-175. https://doi.org/10.1002/eat.1069