A Systematic Review of Literature on School Screening for Eating Disorders
Kathleen Rindahl

Many adolescents with eating disorders are not identified until life threatening physical complications becomes apparent. Research conclusively demonstrates that treatment success depends on early disease identification. Anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa in particular, pose grave risks to individuals, with the highest mortality rates of any mental illness. Onset of these types of eating disorders occurs between 10 and 20 years of age, making their detection in high schools, middle schools, and even in elementary schools important. Thus, this systematic review of literature was undertaken to find out if there is a validated and reliable tool that school nurses could use to effectively screen adolescents for eating disorders. This systematic review identified and evaluated several screening tools previously used to screen adolescents for eating disorders, as reported by research studies published between 1982 and 2015. Irrelevant studies were discarded based on outlined criteria. The STARD 25-point scale was used to assess the relevant studies for quality of the studies’ results and the validity. In the end, the SCOFF questionnaire was identified as a valid and reliable tool the school nurse can utilize effectively to screen students for eating disorders.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/ijhs.v5n3a1