- Avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder (ARFID) symptoms are more likely in patients with eating complaints, weight complaints, and abdominal pain.
Why this matters
- Clinicians should evaluate patients for ARFID symptoms during neurogastroenterology examinations, using screening questionnaires with follow-up questions to assess the need for behavioral health referrals.
- Researchers reviewed the health records of patients referred for neurogastroenterology examinations (N=410; age range, 18-90 years; women, 73%) to determine the prevalence of ARFID symptoms and explore associations with specific symptoms and diagnoses.
- Funding: Lawrence J. and Anne Rubenstein Charitable Foundation; American Gastroenterological Association.
- Overall ARFID symptom prevalence was 23.7%, with 6.3% (n=26) of the patients meeting the full DSM-5 criteria and another 17.3% (n=71) showing clinically significant avoidant or restrictive eating behaviors without a definitive diagnosis.
- ARFID symptoms increased with eating- or weight-related complaints (OR, 5.09; 95% CI, 2.54-10.21); dyspepsia, nausea, or vomiting (OR, 3.59; 95% CI, 2.04-6.32); abdominal pain (OR, 4.72; 95% CI, 1.89-11.81); or >1 diagnosed gastrointestinal (GI) disorder (OR, 1.63; 95% CI, 1.26-2.10).
- The study was retrospective, and health records did not identify the primary gastrointestinal diagnosis or symptom duration.