Pediatric Feeding and Eating Disorders: Current State of Diagnosis and Treatment

  • Nichole R. Kelly
  • Lisa M. Shank
  • Jennifer L. Bakalar
  • Marian Tanofsky-KraffEmail author
Eating Disorders (AS Kaplan, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Eating Disorders


The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders now recognizes six primary feeding and eating disorders including pica, rumination disorder, avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder, anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and binge-eating disorder. Guided by research from the past 3 years, the current review outlines diagnostic criteria for each disorder, their clinical correlates and treatment options. Recent modifications to diagnostic criteria will likely help to improve treatment outcomes and prognosis. Nevertheless, several concerns remain regarding the validity of current diagnostic criteria for youth, including the clinical relevance of the size and frequency of binge eating episodes. Additionally, the lack of randomized controlled trials has led to an overreliance on data from quasi-experimental studies, case series and single case studies that impede development of strong clinical recommendations for treating feeding and eating disorders. Recommendations for future research include identifying empirically supported treatments and prevention programs focused on early markers of pediatric feeding and eating concerns.


Pediatric Child Adolescent Eating disorder Feeding disorder Binge eating Loss of control eating Anorexia nervosa Bulimia nervosa Pica Rumination Avoidant/restrictive food intake Compensatory behavior Regurgitation Weight Overweight Obesity 



The opinions and assertions expressed herein are those of the authors and are not to be construed as reflecting the views of the U.S. Public Health Service, the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, or the U.S. Department of Defense.

Compliance with Ethics Guidelines

Conflict of Interest

Nichole R. Kelly, Lisa M. Shank, Jennifer L. Bakalar and Marian Tanofsky-Kraff declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York (outside the USA) 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nichole R. Kelly
    • 1
    • 2
  • Lisa M. Shank
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jennifer L. Bakalar
    • 1
    • 2
  • Marian Tanofsky-Kraff
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Medical and Clinical PsychologyUniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS), DoDBethesdaUSA
  2. 2.Section on Growth and Obesity, Program in Developmental Endocrinology and GeneticsEunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), National Institutes of Health (NIH), DHHSBethesdaUSA

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