Skip to Content

Seizures

The increased risk of seizures in people with anorexia and bulimia may be caused by dehydration. Seizures are sometimes described as surges of electricity within the brain)
Seizures can also be caused by hyperglycemia or ketoacidosis. Even people without eating disorders can have problems regulating blood sugar when faced with starvation. The blood sugar will drop so dangerously low that it can cause seizures, fainting, nausea, vomiting and disorientation.

Lesions on the brain caused by long-term malnutrition and lack of oxygen-carrying cells to the brain may also be a factor.

If a seizure lasts longer than five minutes, there is always the possibility of heart, kidney, or brain damage. If a seizure of any duration occurs while swimming or driving, there is significant risk, as there is if the person falls and hits his or her head.

It is important to note that some types of antidepressants can increase the risk of seizure and usually carry a warning against prescribing them to people with eating disorders, unless the benefits significantly outweigh the risks.