Browsing by Organization "Columbia University, New York, Department of Epidemiology"

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  • Raevuori, Anu (2009)
    The aim of this study was to deepen the understanding of eating disorders, body image dissatisfaction and related traits in males by examining the epidemiology and genetic epidemiology of these conditions in representative population-based twin samples. The sample of Study I included adolescent twins from FinnTwin12 cohorts born 1983 87 and assessed by a questionnaire at ages 14 y (N=2070 boys, N=2062 girls) and 17 y (N=1857 boys, N=1984 girls). Samples of Studies II-V consisted of young adult twins born 1974-79 from FinnTwin16 cohorts (Study II N=1245 men, Study III N=724 men, Study IV N=2122 men, Study V N=2426 women and N=1962 men), who were assessed by a questionnaire at the age 22-28 y. In addition, 49 men and 526 women were assessed by a diagnostic interview. The overall response rates for both twin cohorts in all studies were 80-90%. In boys, mainly genetic factors (82%, 95% confidence interval [CI] 72-92) explained the covariation of self-esteem between the ages 14 y and 17 y, whereas in girls, environmental factors (69%, 95% CI 43-93) were the largest contributors. Of young men, 30% experienced high muscle dissatisfaction, while 12% used or had used muscle building supplements and/or anabolic steroids on a regular basis. Muscle dissatisfaction exhibited a robust association with the indicators of mental distress and a genetic component (42%, 95% CI 23-59) for its liability in this population was found. The variation of muscle-building substance use was primarily explained by the environmental factors. The incidence rate of anorexia nervosa in males for the age of 10-24 y was 15.7 (95% CI 6.6-37.8) per 100 000 person-years, and its lifetime prevalence by the young adulthood was 0.24% (95% CI 0.03-0.44). All detected probands with anorexia nervosa had recovered from eating disorders, but suffered from substantial psychiatric comorbidity, which manifested also in their co-twins. Additionally, male co-twins of the probands displayed significant dissatisfaction with body musculature, a male-specific feature of body dysmorphic disorder. All probands were from twin pairs discordant for eating disorders. Of the five male probands with anorexia nervosa, only one was from an opposite-sex twin pair. Among women from the opposite-sex pairs, the prevalence of DSM-IV or broad anorexia nervosa was no significantly different compared to that of the women from monozygotic pairs or from dizygotic same-sex pairs. The prevalence of DSM-IV or broad bulimia nervosa did not differ in opposite- versus same-sex female twin individuals either. In both sexes, the overall profile of indicators on eating disorders was rather similar between individuals from opposite-sex and same-sex pairs. In adolescence, development of self-esteem was differently regulated in boys compared to girls: this finding may have far-reaching implications on the etiology of sex discrepancy of internalizing and externalizing disorders. In young men, muscle dissatisfaction and muscle building supplement/steroid use were relatively common. Muscle dissatisfaction was associated with marked psychological distress such as symptoms of depression and disordered eating. Both genetic and environmental factors explained muscle dissatisfaction in the population, but environmental factors appeared to best explain the use of muscle-building substances. In this study, anorexia nervosa in boys and young men from the general population was more common, transient and accompanied by more substantial co-morbidity than previously thought. Co-twins of the probands with anorexia nervosa displayed significant psychopathology such as male specific symptoms of body dysmorphic disorder, but none of them had had an eating disorder: taken together, these traits are suggestive for an endophenotype of anorexia nervosa in males. Little evidence was found on that the risk for anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, disordered eating or body dissatisfaction were associated with twin zygosity. Thus, it is unlikely that in utero femininization, masculinization or postnatal socialization according to the sex of the co-twin have a major influence on the later development of eating disorders or related traits.