Journal of Neural Transmission

, Volume 111, Issue 7, pp 827–840

The need to revise the diagnostic criteria for anorexia nervosa


  • J. Hebebrand
    • Clinical Research Group, Department of Child and Adolescent PsychiatryPhilipps University
  • R. Casper
    • Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural SciencesStanford University School of Medicine
  • J. Treasure
    • Eating Disorders Unit, Department of Psychiatry
  • U. Schweiger
    • Department of PsychiatryUniversity of Lübeck

DOI: 10.1007/s00702-004-0136-9

Cite this article as:
Hebebrand, J., Casper, R., Treasure, J. et al. J Neural Transm (2004) 111: 827. doi:10.1007/s00702-004-0136-9


Anorexia nervosa (AN) is a complex disorder of unclear etiology. We argue that the current DSM-IV criteria do not adequately describe the cardinal symptoms of this “eating disorder”. Our reasoning is based on the lack of empirical evidence supporting the terminology of some of the criteria, which underlie the core of our current conceptualisation of AN. We propose alternative criteria which allow a better integration of biologically derived hypotheses addressing the nosology and the symptomatology of AN.

Keywords: Anorexia nervosa, leptin, diagnostic criteria, weight criterion, drive for activity, hyperactivity

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag/Wien 2004