A 23-year-old member asked:
Can anorexia lead to heart problems?
2 doctor answers • 7 doctors weighed in
Dr. Robert Kwokanswered
Pediatrics 35 years experience
Definitely yes: Anorexia can cause heart problems, which can be deadly. The heart is a strong muscle, but chronic starvation and malnutrition weakens the muscle. The patient can suffer low blood pressure or die of heart failure (heart is too weak to pump enough blood out). The blood chemicals are out of balance in anorexics and can cause slow heart rates and abnormal heart rates, which if severe, can be fatal.
6.3k viewsReviewed >2 years ago
Dr. Anita Prakash commented
Cardiology 31 years experience
Electrolyte abnormalities, such as low potassium and magnesium, can lead to arrhythmic deaths because the heart is a sensitive organ and needs the right mileu in which to pump.
Dec 6, 2014
Dr. Violina Frenkelanswered
15 years experience
Yes: Even after recovering from an eating disorder, women can suffer from heart disease and/or a heart failure. Like other muscles, the heart relies on protein to function properly, and becomes weaker if stressed with trying to function without proper nutrition. The physical stress of an eating disorder wears on every part of the body—and this vital muscle is no exception. Unfortunately, some people wh.
5.5k viewsReviewed >2 years ago
Last updated Apr 2, 2020
People also asked
Connect with a U.S. board-certified doctor by text or video anytime, anywhere.
24/7 visits - just $44!
50% off with $15/month membership
Content on HealthTap (including answers) should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, and interactions on HealthTap do not create a doctor-patient relationship. Never disregard or delay professional medical advice in person because of anything on HealthTap. Call your doctor or 911 if you think you may have a medical emergency.