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An Inpatient Observational Study: Characteristics And Outcomes Of Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID) In Children And Adolescents In Japan

Authors Kurotori I, Shioda K, Abe T, Kato R, Ishikawa S, Suda S

Received 5 June 2019

Accepted for publication 4 October 2019

Published 27 November 2019 Volume 2019:15 Pages 3313—3321


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Taro Kishi

Isaku Kurotori,1 Katsutoshi Shioda,1 Takaaki Abe,1 Rika Kato,1 Shizukiyo Ishikawa,2 Shiro Suda1

1Department of Psychiatry; 2Department of Medical Education Center, Jichi Medical University, Tochigi, Japan

Correspondence: Katsutoshi Shioda
Department of Psychiatry, Jichi Medical University, 3311-1 Yakushiji, Shimotsuke, Tochigi 329-0498, Japan
Tel +81-285-58-7364
Fax +81-285-44-6198
Email [email protected]

Purpose: To determine the clinical characteristics and course of severe avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder (ARFID) in hospitalized children and adolescents and compare them with those of patients with restricting-type anorexia nervosa (R-AN).
Patients and methods: We conducted a retrospective chart review of inpatients diagnosed with ARFID or R-AN based on the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition, at Jichi Children’s Medical Center Tochigi between April 1, 2007 and March 31, 2017. We compared the characteristics of the ARFID and R-AN patients at admission, during hospitalization, and after discharge.
Results: Both the ARFID (n=13) and R-AN (n=79) patients required hospitalization for their medically unstable state. The features of ARFID group included concern about the aversive consequences of eating and avoidance of eating due to sensory concerns. Significant differences were found at admission between ARFID and R-AN groups in age (10.7 vs 12.7 years), family history of mental disorders (46.2% vs 17.7%), comorbid developmental disorders (6 vs 3 cases), and the time from onset to admission (3.9 vs 6.3 months). The body weight status, % ideal body weight (%IBW), % expected body weight (%EBW), <75% IBW rate, and <75% EBW rate did not differ significantly between the two groups at admission or discharge. The duration of post-discharge outpatient follow-up treatment did not differ significantly between ARFID and R-AN groups (15.3 vs 18.4 months); however, ARFID group recovery rate was significantly higher than that of R-AN group (77% vs 43%). The reasons that the patients with ARFID had significantly better outcomes than the R-AN patients remain unclear. Compared to those in previous studies, the present patients were younger and demonstrated better outcomes. Our results indicate that the body weight status is similar between ARFID and R-AN patients, but the ARFID patients achieved better outcomes.
Conclusion: These findings suggest that early onset in childhood, early disease recognition, and early intervention are important factors for achieving better outcomes for patients with ARFID.

Keywords: avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder, ARFID, restricting-type anorexia nervosa, children and adolescents, inpatient, recovery

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