7 Eating Disorders: Anorexia & Bulimia Nervosa Nursing Care Plans

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Anorexia nervosa is an illness of starvation, brought on by severe disturbance of body image and a morbid fear of obesity.  People with anorexia nervosa attempt to maintain a weight that’s far below normal for their age and height. To prevent weight gain or to continue losing weight, people with anorexia nervosa may starve themselves or exercise excessively.

Bulimia nervosa is an eating disorder (binge-purge syndrome) characterized by extreme overeating followed by self-induced vomiting, trying to get rid of the extra calories in an unhealthy way. It may include abuse of laxatives and diuretics.

Although these disorders primarily affect women, approximately 5%–10% of those afflicted are men, and both disorders can be present in the same individual.

Nursing Care Plans

Nursing care planning for patients with eating disorders: anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa includes establishing adequate nutritional intake, correcting fluid and electrolyte imbalance, assist patient to develop a realistic body image and improving self-esteem. Other than the mentioned above, it is also an important nursing priority to provide support in the treatment program and coordinate program with order disciplines.

Included in this post are seven (7) nursing care plans and nursing diagnosis for patients with eating disorders: anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa:

  1. Imbalanced Nutrition: Less Than Body Requirements
  2. Risk for Deficient Fluid Volume
  3. Disturbed Thought Process
  4. Disturbed Body Image, Chronic Low Self-Esteem
  5. Impaired Parenting
  6. Risk for Impaired Skin Integrity
  7. Deficient Knowledge
  8. Other Possible Nursing Diagnoses
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Risk for Impaired Skin Integrity

Nursing Diagnosis

Risk factors may include

  • Altered nutritional/metabolic state; edema
  • Dehydration/cachectic changes (skeletal prominence)

Possibly evidenced by

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  • [Not applicable; the presence of signs and symptoms establishes and actual diagnosis.]

Desired Outcomes

  • Client will verbalize understanding of causative factors and the absence of itching.
  • Client will identify and demonstrate behaviors to maintain soft, supple, intact skin.
Nursing Interventions Rationale
Observe for reddened, blanched, excoriated areas. Indicators of increased risk of breakdown, requiring more intensive treatment.
Encourage bathing every other day instead of daily. Frequent baths contribute to the dryness of the skin.
Use skin cream twice a day and after bathing. Lubricates skin and decreases itching.
Massage skin gently, especially over bony prominences. Improves circulation to the skin, enhances skin tone.
Discuss the importance of frequent position changes, need for remaining active. Enhances circulation and perfusion to the skin by preventing prolonged pressure on tissues.
Emphasize the importance of adequate nutrition and fluid intake. Improved nutrition and hydration will improve skin condition.
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See Also

You may also like the following posts and care plans:

Endocrine and Metabolic Care Plans

Nursing care plans related to the endocrine system and metabolism:

Matt Vera is a registered nurse with a bachelor of science in nursing since 2009 and is currently working as a full-time writer and editor for Nurseslabs. During his time as a student, he knows how frustrating it is to cram on difficult nursing topics. Finding help online is nearly impossible. His situation drove his passion for helping student nurses by creating content and lectures that are easy to digest. Knowing how valuable nurses are in delivering quality healthcare but limited in number, he wants to educate and inspire nursing students. As a nurse educator since 2010, his goal in Nurseslabs is to simplify the learning process, break down complicated topics, help motivate learners, and look for unique ways of assisting students in mastering core nursing concepts effectively.

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