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On the average it is estimated that 1% of females in their teens and early 20s develops this eating disorder. Studies have shown that 10% to 15% will die of complications arising from anorexia nervosa.
Many people with anorexia also have coexisting psychiatric and physical illnesses, including depression, anxiety, obsessive behavior, substance abuse, cardiovascular and neurological complications, and impaired physical development.
People with eating disorders also can suffer from numerous other physical health complications, such as heart conditions or kidney failure, which can lead to death.
Other symptoms may develop over time, including:
• thinning of the bones (osteopenia or osteoporosis)
• brittle hair and nails
• dry and yellowish skin
• growth of fine hair over body (e.g., lanugo)
• mild anemia, and muscle weakness and loss
• severe constipation
• low blood pressure, slowed breathing and pulse
• drop in internal body temperature, causing a person to feel cold all the time