By Alexander R. Lucas
Emotionally and physically devastating, anorexia nervosa is the third most common chronic illness in teenage girls, striking one in every two hundred (boys only make up 10% of all cases). And while there are a plethora of books on the subject, most are either personal accounts of recovery or attempts to explain the disease from only one perspective, be it psychoanalytic, behavioral, cultural, or biological. Now, in this much-needed resource, Dr. Alexander Lucas draws on 40 years of experience, mostly at the Mayo Clinic, to offer clear guidance and authoritative advice on how to overcome anorexia nervosa. Based on his own unique research with thousands of patients, and striking a careful balance between psychological, cultural, and biological approaches, Dr. Lucas demystifies this seemingly irrational disease and guides parents through the harrowing process of recovery. The book defines anorexia, illustrates how it can evolve and how common it really is, and outlines every part of the treatment process, from the early warning signs that parents should watch out for, to the initial evaluation, to specific treatment plans. Dr. Lucas emphasizes the patient's role in defining the healing process, with the support of the family and medical team. Throughout the book, he counsels optimism, stressing that in spite of the destructive power of the disease, most who suffer from anorexia nervosa fully recover and are able to live normal, healthy, and productive lives. For anyone seeking level-headed, medically sound, and comprehensive guidance on the most effective treatments for this life-threatening disorder, Demystifying Anorexia Nervosa offers a wealth of reliable, reassuring information.